Dr. Angela Davis has agreed to accept the 2019 Fred L. Shuttlesworth Award from the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, says BCRI President/CEO Andrea Taylor.
“Looking ahead, the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute remains steadfast in its commitment to preserving and promoting civil and human rights, and being a source of inspiration and inclusion to the community as the struggle continues,” Taylor says.
The revelation comes nearly eight months after the Institute’s Board of Directors bowed to pressures emanating from some segments of the city’s Jewish community—as well as some African Americans—and stunningly rescinded its decision to honor Davis because of her long support of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement in support of Palestine. Davis is a Birmingham native.
After an embarrassing backlash that included biting criticism from Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin, the resignation of several board members, and criticisms from around the world, the board reinstated the award.
By then, however, Davis had agreed to instead be honored by a group of local, inter-generational activists and historical figures, organized as a revival of the Committee for Truth and Reconciliation. The group hosted Davis in April for two events: a series of seminars called “Power to the People: Activism and Justice Forum,” and “A Conversation with Dr. Angela Davis,” where she was interviewed by another Birmingham native, Dr. Imani Perry, the Hughes-Rogers Professor of African-American Studies at Princeton University.
The latter free event, held at the Boutwell Auditorium, sold out within hours after tickets were made available.
At the time, Davis said whether she would accept the award would be left up to local leaders.
“I think that should be a collective decision that is taken by activists here in Birmingham,” she said. “The issues are not simply issues involving me. I will take my lead from the community in Birmingham.”
As of this writing, Davis has not responded to efforts to obtain a comment.
Taylor says details as to when or where Davis will receive the award are not yet finalized.
( Source: al.com)