Saturday, August 10, 2013

Quote of the Day

[Bayard] Rustin was a radical visionary – a Black gay activist for freedom and peace during a time when the conditions of both of these identities were perilous. The fact that he lived at the intersection of these identities while fighting for the freedoms of all oppressed people is even more revolutionary. Rustin owned his power as a Black, openly gay man to fiercely challenge the status quo and fight on behalf of the oppressed and marginalized, while at the same time refusing to be defined by any single aspect of his identity. Rusting was as unapologetically Black as he was gay, and by his very presence challenged the evils of homophobia and racism throughout his life. His legacy leaves a salient lesson for us on the power of living authentically.

– Sharon J. Lettman-Hicks
Executive Director & CEO, National Black Justice Coalition
NBJC Statement on Bayard Rustin Receiving the Presidential Medal of Freedom
August 9, 2013

Related Off-site Links:
Obama Awards Bayard Rustin – the 'Man Behind the March' – the Presidential Medal of Freedom – Peter Dreier (The Huffington Post, August 9, 2013).
Gay Quaker Civil Rights Leader Earns White House Honor for Work Largely Hidden from History – Colby Itkowitz (The Morning Call, August 9, 2013).
National Black Justice Coalition Applauds Bayard Rustin Recognition by (August 9, 2013).
Bayard Rustin Awarded Presidential Medal of Freedom: Continuing Pertinence of "Time on Two Crosses" – William D. Lindsey (Bilgrimage, August 10, 2013).
Remembering a Forgotten Gay Civil Rights (January 22, 2013).
A Closer Look at Bayard Rustin – Walter Naegle (
Brother Outsider: The Life of Bayard Rustin

UPDATES: Bayard Rustin: The Man Homophobia Almost Erased From History – Steven Thrasher (Buzz Feed, August 27, 2013).
Meet Bayard Rustin, the Gay Socialist Pacifist Who Planned the 1963 March on Washington – Dylan Matthews (Washington Post, August 28, 2013).
March on Washington Can Teach Catholic Hierarchy About Equality – Bob Shine (Bondings 2.0, August 30, 2013).

See also the previous Wild Reed posts:
The Same Premise: Making the Connection Between the Black and Gay Struggles for Civil Rights
The Response of One Gay Black Man to the Charge that King's Dream Has Been "Hijacked" by the Gay Movement
Why Civil Rights Leader Julian Bond Will Be Marching for Gay Rights

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