Saturday, March 1, 2014

Honoring Dr. Martin Luther Kings' Legacy

From Black Star news:

Continuing a tradition of over 20 years in celebration of Black History Month, the Consulate General of Israel in New York together with the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York and the Jewish National Fund, will honor Dr. Clarence B. Jones, who served as a key adviser and speechwriter for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and Reverend Dr. Jesse T. Williams Jr. of the Convent Avenue Baptist Church, with the distinguished Martin Luther King Jr. Award.

Ambassador Ido Aharoni, Consul General of Israel in New York, and Rabbi Michael S. Miller, JCRC-NY, will officially present the award. Dr. Jones and Rev. Dr. Williams are being honored for their commitment to the dream of freedom and equality, their efforts in spreading compassion and for uniting communities of all backgrounds.

The Martin Luther King Jr. Award has been presented by the Consulate General of Israel in New York for over 20 years to individuals and organizations that promote ethnic and cultural understanding. To celebrate this great visionary, together with the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York and the Jewish National Fund, the Consulate General of Israel in New York annually honors those whose work reflects Dr. King's legacy of hope and peace.

From the San Diego Jewish Week:

In his remarks, Dr. Jones expressed concern over the campaign to delegitimize Israel, and said that even if Israel has made some mistakes, it “doesn’t mean that gives you carte blanche to say ‘Israel is an Apartheid state’ or ‘Israel is a racist state.’” He also expressed disbelief when hearing of people who misinterpret Dr. King’s legacy by alleging that the great civil rights leader would not support the State of Israel today.

“I am always a little taken aback,” Dr. Jones said. “I am seeing people quoting [Dr. King] frequently out of context to develop a thesis, an argument, that he would not be in support of the State of Israel. That is absolutely insane.”

Dr. Jones stressed the steady bond that Dr. King had with Israel and the Jewish community and the importance of today’s Jewish and African-American communities making an effort to restore the close-knit ties they had during the Civil Rights Movement.

“No African-American leader of national stature was more passionate, privately and publicly, than Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in fostering a 24/7 working coalition with the Jewish community and his support for the State of Israel,” Dr. Jones said.

Dr. Jones closed his remarks by recalling Dr. King’s definition of a “wintertime soldier,” quoting Dr. King as saying, “’anybody can stand with you in the warm summer sunlight of an August summer. But only a winter soldier stands with you at midnight in the alpine chill of winter.’”

“From the standpoint of someone who has represented the great legacy of this extraordinary man, Martin Luther King Jr.,” Dr. Jones continued. ”I say to my African American brothers and sisters, speaking of the standpoint of the derivative relationship I had with Martin Luther King Jr., the time is now for every African American person, every person of stature in the African American community, to come forward and stand with Israel in the alpine chill of winter, to show that we are wintertime soldiers.”

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