Philip Randolph #BlackHistoryMonth #Day10

IMG_5296 Asa Philip Randolph (April 15, 1889 – May 16, 1979) was a leader in the African-American civil-rights movement, the American labor movement, and socialist political parties.

He organized and led the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters, the first predominantly African American labor union. In the early civil-rights movement, Randolph led the March on Washington Movement, which convinced President Franklin D. Roosevelt to issue Executive Order 8802 in 1941, banning discrimination in the defense industries during World War II. The group then successfully pressured President Harry S. Truman to issue Executive Order 9981 in 1948, ending segregation in the armed services.

In 1963, Randolph was the head of the March on Washington, which was organized by Bayard Rustin, at which Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered his “I Have A Dream” speech. Randolph inspired the Freedom budget, sometimes called the “Randolph Freedom budget”, which aimed to deal with the economic problems facing the black community.

IMG_5302 Civil Rights March on Washington, D.C. (Leaders of the march)

Randolph and Rustin also formed an important alliance with Martin Luther King, Jr. In 1957, when schools in the south resisted school integration following Brown v. Board of Education, Randolph organized a Prayer Pilgrimage with Martin Luther King, Jr. In 1958 and 1959, Randolph organized Youth Marches for Integrated Schools in Washington, DC. At the same time, he arranged for Rustin to teach King how to organize peaceful demonstrations in Alabama and to form alliances with progressive whites. The protests directed by Rustin and King in cities such as Birmingham and Montgomery provoked a violent backlash by police and the local Ku Klux Klan throughout the summer of 1963, which was captured on television and broadcast throughout the nation and the world. Rustin later remarked that Birmingham “was one of television’s finest hours. Evening after evening, television brought into the living-rooms of America the violence, brutality, stupidity, and ugliness of {police commissioner} Eugene “Bull” Connor’s effort to maintain racial segregation.”Partly as a result of the violent spectacle in Birmingham, which was becoming an international embarrassment, the Kennedy administration drafted civil rights legislation aimed at ending Jim Crow once and for all.

In 1942, received the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, Spingarn Medal

On September 14, 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson presented Randolph with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

In 1967 awarded the Pacem in Terris Peace and Freedom Award. It was named after a 1963 encyclical letter by Pope John XXIII that calls upon all people of good will to secure peace among all nations. Pacem in terris is Latin for ‘Peace on Earth’.

Named Humanist of the Year in 1970 by the American Humanist Association.

Named to the Florida Civil Rights Hall of Fame in January, 2014.

Randolph had a significant impact on the Civil Rights Movement from the 1930s onward. The Montgomery Bus Boycott in Alabama was directed by E.D. Nixon, who had been a member of the BSCP and was influenced by Randolph’s methods of non-violent confrontation. Nationwide, the Civil Rights Movement in the 1950s and 1960s used tactics pioneered by Randolph, such as encouraging African-Americans to vote as a bloc, mass voter registration, and training activists for non-violent direct action.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s