Andrew Young speaks on Challenges Before a New Generation: Civil and Human Rights in the Global Era
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Andrew Young, former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, former mayor of Atlanta, and a close associate of Martin Luther King, Jr. (GRS’55, Hon.’59), delivers a lecture on the importance of nonviolent action in human and civil rights struggles. Young begins by sketching the history of the civil rights movement and reminding the audience that when King emerged as a civil rights leader, “nonviolence was considered cowardice.” He then traces the progress of nonviolent strategies in the United States and compares them to bloodier civil rights struggles in other countries. Young advocates for attention to the spiritual and emotional needs of oppressed people who are working towards freedom and talks about practicing nonviolence in our personal lives and being open to “new truths from those who are closest to us.”
Young is introduced by Tanya Bascombe (SAR’08), president of the BU NAACP. A question-and-answer session follows the lecture.
November 15, 2006, 5:30 p.m.
George Sherman Union Metcalf Hall
About the speaker:
Born and raised in New Orleans, Andrew Young earned two degrees from Howard University. He attended Hartford Seminary in Hartford, Conn., receiving a bachelor of divinity degree in 1955, and became a minister in the United Church of Christ. As a pastor in Jim Crow Alabama, Young became involved in the drive to register black voters and began studying the nonviolent tactics of Mohandas Gandhi. He joined the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, which was led by Martin Luther King, Jr. (GRS’55, Hon.’59). Young, a Democrat, was elected to Congress in 1972, the first African-American to represent Georgia since Reconstruction. He was reelected twice, and in 1977 President Jimmy Carter appointed him ambassador to the United Nations, a position he held until 1979. Young was the mayor of Atlanta for two terms, from 1981 to 1989, and cochaired the committee that brought the 1996 Summer Olympics to Atlanta. He currently runs GoodWorks International, which helps multinational corporations expand into the developing world, especially Africa.