Canton pays tribute to the nation's great civil rights leaders - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Canton pays tribute to the nation's great civil rights leaders

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
CANTON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

The Canton City Council led by Mayor William Truly paid tribute to African Americans who paved the way. He asked council members and other city employees to portray some of the nation's great civil rights leaders. By doing this they were able to bring history to life.

One by one the men and women who chose to change the fabric of Black America took center stage.

"I'd like to say good evening. My name is Booker T. Washington. I was born a slave in Western Virginia in 1856." 

"I'm Muhammad Ali. I'm the greatest, I am the best float like a butterfly and sting like a bee. World Champ Muhammad Ali."

Then came the American political activist, academic, and author, Angela Davis. 

"I had no problem relating to her. She was a leader. She stood for something. She was about change," said Department of Cultural Needs Director Courtney Rainey.

The same qualities that she admires in Davis she hopes to instill in her daughter. 

"As a young black woman coming up in the world I want her to know that no matter what she is facing as far as adversity, is she puts her mind to it she can do it," added Rainey.

Before the program ended, Mayor Truly made it very clear that the civil rights movement owed it successes not only to African-Americans but to White Americans as well. 

"Two Jewish guys actually lost their lives in Neshoba County. In Philadelphia, MS. I cannot present to you today Schwerner or James Chaney but I can present to you a white American who came down to help African Americans vote," said Mayor Truly.

I leave you with these words spoken by Martin Luther King Jr. 

"When all of Gods children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Catholic and Protestant, will be able to join hands together and sing in the words of old spiritual. Free at last thank God we are free at last," added the Mayor.

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