Thank you for joining us today. As Dr. Thomson mentioned,
I'm Tom Corts, president of Samford University and more relevant,
president of Alabama Citizens for Constitutional Reform. I'm pleased
to be joined by several distinguished members of our board, who, like
me, are here first and foremost in our capacity as citizens of the
great state of Alabama. Our mission at ACCR Foundation, Inc. is to
educate and motivate Alabamians to join in rewriting Alabama's antiquated
constitution, which we believe to be the worst in the world.
It's time for a new constitution for a better Alabama:
a constitution that empowers instead of prohibits , that offers vision
instead of reaction, that promotes results instead of inefficiency
and that fosters community rather than division. We need a new constitution
that simply allows us to be the best Alabama that we can possibly
As you now, Gov. Don Siegelman and others have challenged
the people of Alabama to show our leaders that we want a new constitution.
To that end, Alabama Citizens for Constitutional Reform grew out of
rallies and forums across the state where citizens voiced their strong
support for reform.
Today we want to share with you our three-point strategy
for helping our fellow citizens achieve a new constitution for a better
First, our citizens need the freedom to rewrite their
The framers of the 1901 document intentionally made reform
difficult. Therefore the first task we must undertake is to remove
constitutional barriers that restrict Alabamians' freedom to reform
their government. We will be supporting legislation that broadens
the people's ability to rewrite their bloated constitution through
ACCR Foundation, Inc. does not endorse any particular
method of reform at this time. Indeed, we envision several effective
ways to write a modern constitution. We simply want the people of
Alabama, working through their elected leaders , to enjoy the freedom
to write and approve a modern document as they see fit.
Second, we will work continuously to educate the people
of Alabama about how our constitution holds us back as a state. We
were thrilled to learn recently that constitutional reform has registered
as a problem in a recent public opinion survey, a copy of which you'll
find in your packet. As citizens learn firsthand about our efforts,
many are joining this crusade to give Alabama a modern mission statement
for the 21st century.
Finally, we will work as long as it takes to achieve
a modern constitution through broad participation of citizens and
their legislators and governor. We believe that an open and well-informed
process will produce the fundamental laws that will guide Alabama
toward a future that holds promise for everyone.
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