When I was asked to play Dr. King in Prince Jack, I knew I could not refuse, but I also knew he was so familiar and iconic to people all over the world, I was not going to try to "be" him, but do my best to "represent" him and what he stood for.
As we approach the end of 2013, all I can think of is 'WOW,' what a year. In 2013 we celebrated history. We remembered the 150th anniversary of the issuing by President Abraham Lincoln of the Emancipation Proclamation.
The obligation to propel Dr. King's message of social equity into the modern day rests on the shoulders of this generation.
Federal judges from trial courts to the Supreme Court have interpreted the Civil Rights Act virtually, although not entirely, out of existence. This is so across judicial philosophies, across the political spectrum and even across presidential appointments.
As long as the Southern White anti-government, anti-tax, anti-child, anti-poor, and anti-Black faction controls the party, no one of good conscience should run as, vote for, or identify with the Republican Party.
The lack of racial/ethnic diversity in the nation's nonprofit leadership is coupled with an urgent need to cultivate more young community members as leaders and then promote them into leadership positions. The nonprofit sector faces a "war for talent" with the business and government sectors to recruit and retain young leaders.
Fear is a natural emotion in the face of opposition and challenge. But Judaism asks us to do our best not to fear humans when making value choices. We must live by principle even when presented with threats.
During the War for Independence, a young, black Philadelphian, James Forten, decided to fight on the American side following the passage of a state law titled "An Act for the Gradual Abolition of Slavery." It convinced him that Pennsylvania, at least, was on the right side of the struggle.
Excitedly I took notes on cheap yellowed copy paper, trimmed from newsprint for note-taking and folded three ways so as to fit in my suit coat. At 22 I knew I was enjoying what I thought may be a booming career.
If President Obama really means what he has said repeatedly about supporting the aspirations of the Egyptian people, then he will have to recognize that in Egypt today, as in America in 1963, that can mean opposing government policy.
In the maturity of our age and life experience, this time when Natalie and I came together, we were both acutely conscious of our racial differences.
This year, as we commemorate, we also educate. And, we also re-commit to the dream MLK had: a dream which has not been met. Civil rights of all kinds are under attack in our country.
All social movements will need a "civic infrastructure" -- a participatory, "small d" democratic formation that is organized at a scale sufficient to respond to systemic social, economic, and political problems.
On September 30th friends and supporters of the Children's Defense Fund (CDF) will gather at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. to celebrate CDF's 40th anniversary and honor our best known alum, Hillary Rodham Clinton.
'Civil rights' does not mean, 'African American Rights.' We do not enjoy civil rights as Muslims, Jews, Christians, or Hindus. We do not enjoy civil rights as Italians, Indians, Africans, or Asians. We enjoy civil rights not separately, but together, as Americans.
I had the pleasure to speak and participate at the March On Washington this year. We cheered, we cried, we remembered, we chanted, we commemorated and we marched, in the same spirit of those who fought for us in times past.