On Democracy Now! 7/31/20:
As family, friends and dignitaries paid their final respects at the Atlanta funeral of John Lewis, the civil rights leader and 17-term Georgia Congressmember was remembered as a singular force for equality and justice. The funeral took place at the historic Ebenezer Baptist Church, once led by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., where senior pastor Rev. Raphael Warnock contrasted Lewis’ legacy with “some in high office who are much better at division than vision,” and described the late politician as “a true American patriot who risked his life and bled for the hope and promise of democracy.”
As mourners gathered at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta to honor the life of Georgia Congressmember John Lewis, among those who spoke was civil rights icon Rev. James Lawson, who helped to train John Lewis in nonviolence when Lewis was a student in Nashville. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once described Rev. Lawson as “the leading theorist and strategist of nonviolence in the world.” Lawson invoked John Lewis’s life as a call to action. “We will not be quiet as long as our nation continues to be the most violent culture in the history of humankind,” Lawson said.
In his stirring eulogy at the funeral service for Congressmember John Lewis, President Barack Obama said expanded voting rights would be the greatest way to honor the civil rights icon’s legacy. In a speech that condemned the status of American democracy without ever naming the sitting president, Obama called for election day to be declared a national holiday, full Congressional representation for Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico, and the end of the filibuster, which he called a “Jim Crow relic.” “You want to honor John? Let’s honor him by revitalizing the law he was willing to die for,” Obama said in reference to the Voting Rights Act.
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