News Civil Rights Attorney Fred Gray Honored With NAACP LDF’s Lifetime Achievement Award

Fred Gray at podium Courtesy: NAACP LDF

The 92-year old activist, state legislator, and preacher was honored for his numerous contributions to America’s most important civil rights battles.

Fred Gray, the attorney who fought some of Black America’s most important legal battles, is referred to as the “Chief Counsel” of the Civil Rights era. For his heroics in American history, he received his flowers reccently from the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, where the group gave him its Thurgood Marshall Lifetime Achievement Award.

“I have received many awards, but none of these awards…means to me as much as this award coming from the Legal Defense Fund here in honor of Thurgood Marshall,” said Gray during an acceptance speech at the organization’s 35th National Equal Justice Awards Dinner on Thursday, May 4, 2023, in New York. Gray was among several honorees at the dinner, including billionaire Robert F. Smith, chair of Vista Equity Partners, philanthropic company the Emerson Collective, and Nike Inc.’s Jordan Brand.

Gray is 92-years old and still practicing law. He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Joe Biden in 2022 for his steadfast work at the forefront of several Civil Rights Movement cases. The most notable is the Supreme Court case in which the NAACP started legal action against the city of Montgomery, Ala. This resulted in the desegregation of the bus system there after the defiance of Rosa Parks, Claudette Colvin and others, which resulted in a yearlong bus boycott in 1955 and 1956.

He was also the attorney for men who were unwittingly involved in an experiment conducted in Tuskegee, Ala., by the U.S. government for more than 40 years. In the Tuskegee Syphilis Study, hundreds of people were afflicted with syphilis and went untreated by government doctors who wished to study the effects of the disease. He secured a $10 million settlement for the survivors and their heirs in 1974.

The 60th Anniversary of the Montgomery Bus Boycott – Dec. 1, 2015 marks 60 years since Rosa Parks, an African-American woman, boldly took her seat in history by refusing to give up her spot in a whites-only section on a Montgomery, Alabama, city bus. Her arrest led to a more than a year-long organized boycott African-American residents and against the racist city bus company. The action led to the Supreme Court decision ruling bus segregation illegal in the state.

A contemporary of Marshall, these were two of many cases that he handled in a nearly 70-year career in law in defense of Black people and working in tandem with the Legal Defense Fund. During his speech, he explained why he chose working as an attorney as a way of making a difference.

Read the complete originally posted on BET here.

Photo Courtesy: NAACP LDF

MLK Day 2023: What to know about the civil rights icon’s celebration

Martin Luther King JR day sign illustration for the civil rights leader

The annual King Holiday Observance is a time that we celebrate, commemorate and honor the life, legacy and impact of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Global citizens will have unique opportunities to learn and unite in celebration of Dr. King’s groundbreaking work and Mrs. Coretta Scott King’s powerful continuation and formal institutionalization of that work through a variety of engaging events hosted by The King Center leading up to The King Holiday on January 16th, 2023.

As we witness nations around the world continue to struggle under the weight of violence, hate and poverty, today’s social, political and economic landscape reveals the urgent necessity of Dr. King’s philosophy and methodology of Nonviolence (Nonviolence365™). The King Center leads the charge to provide education and training in Nonviolence365; while serving as the vital living memorial of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Our strategic theme for 2023 is ‘Cultivating a Beloved Community Mindset to Transform Unjust Systems’. This theme defines the 2023 King Holiday Observance events and programming while serving as a compass for all the work we will do this upcoming calendar year and beyond. The pioneering work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. demonstrated that Kingian Nonviolence (Nonviolence365™) is the sustainable solution to injustice and violence in our world, ultimately leading to the creation of the Beloved Community, where injustice ceases and love prevails.

The King Center welcomes and invites you to join this movement for a new future as we strive to cultivate a Beloved Community Mindset, and ultimately transform unjust systems.

Read more from The King Center here.

View the complete list of 2023 King Holiday Observance Events here.

Maya Angelou becomes first Black woman featured on U.S. quarter

black women have changed history. Photo is of Maya Angelou

A new U.S. quarter featuring legendary poet, writer and activist Maya Angelou went into circulation on Monday (Jan. 10), making her the first Black woman to be featured on the coin.

In a statement, the U.S. Mint announced the new coin, which is the first of five designs in its American Women Quarters Program. Other quarters in the series, which celebrates important women in American history, will continue to be rolled out later this year and through 2025.

“Each time we redesign our currency, we have the chance to say something about our country — what we value and how we’ve progressed as a society,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said in a release. “I’m very proud that these coins celebrate the contributions of some of America’s most remarkable women, including Maya Angelou.

The quarter still features Former President George Washington’s profile on the “heads” side, while the “tails” side pictures Angelou in front of a bird and rising sun — a nod to her 1969 debut memoir I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings and a symbol “of the way she lived.”

The push for the American Women Quarters Program began in 2017 with support from California Rep. Barbara Lee, whose Circulating Collectible Coin Redesign Act passed last year.

U.S. quarter featuring Maya Angelou“As a leader in the Civil Rights Movement, poet laureate, college professor, Broadway actress, dancer and the first female African American cable car conductor in San Francisco, Maya Angelou’s brilliance and artistry inspired generations of Americans,” Lee said in a statement on Monday. “If you find yourself holding a Maya Angelou quarter, may you be reminded of her words, ‘Be certain that you do not die without having done something wonderful for humanity.’”

In a tweet, she added, “The phenomenal women who shaped American history have gone unrecognized for too long — especially women of color. Proud to have led this bill to honor their legacies.”

Besides the civil rights icon, the U.S. Mint’s quarters program will also distribute coins featuring Sally Ride, an astronaut and the first American woman to travel to space; Anna May Wong, considered to be the first Chinese-American Hollywood movie star; Wilma Mankiller, activist and the Cherokee Nation’s first female principal chief; and Adelina Otero-Warren, a woman’s suffragist and the first Latina to run for Congress.

Read the original article posted on Revolt TV.

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