Champion for Human Rights: Reverend Al Sharpton and His Activism
The Reverend Al Sharpton and Politics Nation
Reverend Al Sharpton is an ordained minister who has a national radio show and leads an extensive civil rights organization. He has also hosted a news and opinion television program on MSNBC.
His muddled style and live flub with the teleprompter have led to frequent parody on NBC’s Saturday Night Live, where Kenan Thompson portrays him.
Reverend Al Sharpton
The Reverend Al Sharpton, political activist and Baptist minister, has used his talents to champion a host of causes. Through his non profit National Action Network he promotes a modern civil rights agenda that fights against gun violence, worker’s rights, ending unjust police policies like stop and frisk, education reform, women’s rights and gay rights to name a few.
His activism and direct-action campaigns have brought attention to a number of injustices, from the Central Park Five’s arrest, to the murder of Abner Louima to the U.S Navy’s bombing of Vieques Island in Puerto Rico.
Throughout his career, Sharpton has garnered both praise and criticism. His flare for the dramatic and his flub with the teleprompter have made him a target of parody, including on Saturday Night Live with Kenan Thompson. But he doesn’t seem to take any of it personally, continuing to use his platform to bring light to underreported issues. His ability to connect domestic challenges with global issues makes him a force to be reckoned with.
National Action Network
The National Action Network is one of the Nation’s leading civil rights organizations with chapters throughout the United States. It is rooted in the spirit and tradition of Dr. Martin Luther King and works to promote a modern civil rights agenda, including fighting for one standard of justice and decency for all. The organization hosts weekly action rallies, hosts two nationally syndicated radio shows, and host the Politics Nation cable news show on MSNBC.
Reverend Al Sharpton is a widely known media personality who has hosted many popular political talk shows. He is also an established civil rights leader and activist who has participated in numerous protests. His style of delivery and verbalized understanding of topics on Politics Nation has led to a number of parodies, most notably on the NBC series Saturday Night Live with Kenan Thompson playing Sharpton.
In 2017, Sharpton helped organize a march in support of the family of Trayvon Martin killed by neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman. He also organized buses, chartered by NAN, to bring people to Florida to participate in a protest of the case.
The Al Sharpton Foundation
Long before combating police brutality became a mainstream issue, Sharpton was on the frontlines of the movement. He led protests after the 1986 racially motivated beating of a man who drove through Howard Beach; marched in Bensonhurst after the 1991 death of 7-year-old Gavin Cato, who was killed by a Hasidic driver; and delivered a eulogy at the funeral of George Floyd, whose death in police custody sparked nationwide demonstrations.
Alexander’s film shows Sharpton as an older, wiser figure who continues to fight injustice wherever he finds it. He and NAN have led campaigns on gun violence, pushing for worker’s rights, ending unjust policies like stop-and-frisk, education reform and fighting for a higher minimum wage. NAN also organizes weekly action rallies and works within the spirit and tradition of Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. to promote a modern civil rights agenda that includes the fight for one standard of justice, decency and equal opportunities for all.
Keepin’ It Real
Reverend Al Sharpton is a champion for human rights. He has been at the vanguard of issues promoting equal standards and decency for decades. Despite the many naysayers, he persists in his mission. He is a daily radio talk show host and has a long list of accomplishments in civil rights and community activism.
His dedication to his cause has made him a beloved figure across the country. Those who once shunned him now crowd his rallies and support his causes. He preaches throughout the United States and averages 80 formal sermons each year.
A modern-day cultural icon, he is the founder and president of the National Action Network, hosts MSNBC’s Politics Nation and his own nationally syndicated radio talk show Keepin’ It Real, and has written a number of books including Rise Up: Confronting a Country at the Crossroads. In his speeches and sermons, he has challenged the American political establishment to include all people.