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Tonight's first Friday features highlights from Jackson State University's thirty third annual Martin Luther King birthday convocation. The goal of the ceremony is to celebrate and remember the contributions Dr. King made for Nonviolent Social Change in America. What's your tradition. Why is there. Why. Is a tradition a tradition. Yeah. You can't start. From one generation to the next. Not in writing but by example. We are here to the heart of the Jackson State University tradition. James you tradition this one has been in D.C. yesterday supported by the Jaish e presidents beginning with Dr. John a people's view and continuing with President Mason the tradition began on January
1969. When Dr. Martin Walker Alexander courageously lay Jackson State University and family around the university to the celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday in this city. Instead that was a year not as a nation. Not our congregation. A tradition it is a continuity and uplifting activity that helps us to focus on the best body. Of. The human condition the best qualities of brotherhood and sisterhood the highest law and compassion are the ideal. This convocation and nobles are the tradition of Americanizing King's birthday continue a continuity that connects us to our
African culture through slavery to segregation and racial the tradition and cultural continuity embodied in this celebration. Now connects us to the 21st century as we know in the end this third convocation. Let us remember the words of Martin Walker Alexander when she wrote The king is dead long live the king. If they ask you why do you tell him he came to wait for consciousness to be there to teach you how to dream. Leave it be not just take courage keep on believing and reach the top. I was.
Right. And the people.
It never really big around was when we discovered we were black and and small and different and nobody wanted and nobody understood. Who in spite of these things and want. To laugh and dance and sing and play and drink there was that religion and success raising money men and their children and then died of consumption and me and Lynch. It was 90 55 and he just sat Chicago Dallas side of the Mississippi to visit his mom's people and some say.
The full story goes that the 14 year old. Was bright and playful and that he spoke to a white woman some say. Some say he minus a baby as the folklore but the facts are that on that day as he slept dreaming about baseball and football the pictures show how when he was snatched from his mother's meeting she listed. Places for him
when they came in the night riders and they dragged him out and they tried to keep it to keep them from helping him and protecting his nephew. Down to Mississippi to visit his mom. But they beat him and shot and castrated and then they tied his body to a GM file and dumped it in the Tallahatchie River. That was 1955 and he had just come from the South should go down south to Mississippi to visit his mother's people. It was June 16 inches
of rain our Johnson 17 years old hair style ships to study engineering one and twenty one Mississippi State and he came. To fulfill the dreams and aspirations that is. And he liked to watch the stars. And. He talked about the fact that he didn't. Do it anybody else he thought that they can take.
Over. That day when he got into his front yard and then the rest is history. A bloody detail that ended in the state claiming it to be suicide. But I already told you that he was getting ready to ship and to watch the stars. He was bright shiny new telescope experience came from making a pratty brand new second hand computer and he taught us how to play games on the computer. Thinking about thinking about life and the place that you've been here you were
driving back from a family reunion leading into the drive. Way. The drive way. He saw some fruits fish. Up against the tree in the front of the gun in the front. Where's my son. Playing second hand computer the same in Kokomo Mississippi where three days before the Klan marched and spray painted the wall on the bridge. So who's in charge. The input is right Sawyer and as he put the bright lights on he saw the see if you're swinging up against the tree he saw the lynching of his son John.
June 16 1965 not 60 90 90 to 45 but June 16. For Fannie Lou Hamer never got a little beating in Wynona city jail for George Lee the bills only coming back from church because he tried to register people to vote for James Byrd a 21st century martyr. Who was dragged from the back of a pickup truck in Jasper Texas to step away and for a chilly choppy waters of the Atlantic Ocean. Spot is right Painted Rock shifted from side to side. Captivity. We're here. We had to be here
and we have to do what we were born to do and we have to take a stand. Just came she just told us when she opened up the program just a legacy of Dr. King to be standing. Because black babies die every day because this country the United States of America. Because we have great pain. We are here to testify. We're going to talk about that and says we have to try to defeat justice story justice only justice bloody and just.
Speak to people sometimes read faces when I tell these stories about the work that I'm doing about the shipyard in Mississippi where clients of mine find nooses hanging in the workplace. August of 98 21st century tell stories reach back and get in. You get the stuff and then people start to see people look at me like how can that be. Lucky to be the free to tell people you know out of garbage cans. We
are lucky enough and blessed enough to get an education. It's and you know this. We can't stop talking for 10 jumbo all about the civil rights and we ration. Why is she so negative and say you know that promotions come and he told me if I just keep somebody else's run this race is over. Don't take it any more and.
If we. If we have to be shocked by the things that I'm about to see and do.
And they blew it off. And if you were today that you know just for what you know free state. Justice take the Supreme Court justice to them. Black
and white people. Need to. Be free and. That's. Fine.
This is. For. Teachers. Let me
tell you if you say to me. You know. You can see the same. Change you know. Now.
And even though she died naturally she suffered because of when she tried to run away. She's dead. Beginning day camp. What.
If this question. Is a question should be where it is a question. But if you look at Nancy Drew and the people there and that kind of stuff about black folks and anybody get from Mississippi to visit his mom back in the day. I don't want you to forgive me.
The T-shirt. He. Knows. But.
Shit. Just is just. He brought us home. Eat eat eat. I cheat. Eat. Me. Tonight's first Friday featured highlights from Jackson State University's 30 13 year old Martin Luther King's birthday consequential. The goal of the ceremony was to celebrate and remember the contributions Dr. Pou made for Nonviolent Social Change in America.
First Friday
Martin Luther King Convocation
Contributing Organization
Mississippi Public Broadcasting (Jackson, Mississippi)
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Episode Description
Series: First Friday Title: Martin Luther King Convocation Time: 27:15 Date: 02/01/02
Broadcast Date
Social Issues
Race and Ethnicity
Media type
Moving Image
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AAPB Contributor Holdings
Mississippi Public Broadcasting
Identifier: MPB 13703 (MPB)
Format: Digital Betacam
Generation: Air version
Duration: 0:27:15
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Chicago: “First Friday; Martin Luther King Convocation,” 2002-01-02, Mississippi Public Broadcasting, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed June 8, 2023,
MLA: “First Friday; Martin Luther King Convocation.” 2002-01-02. Mississippi Public Broadcasting, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. June 8, 2023. <>.
APA: First Friday; Martin Luther King Convocation. Boston, MA: Mississippi Public Broadcasting, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from