Carl William Spitzer
carlwilliamspitzeriv at JUNO.COM
Wed Jul 28 10:55:56 MDT 1999
Rev. Jesse Jackson speaks spirited words at Harvard U.
By Parker R. Conrad
(U-WIRE) CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- Joseph S. Nye, dean of the Kennedy School of
Government (KSG), introduced the Rev. Jesse L. Jackson as "the most
impressive orator of our time" at Tuesday's KSG Class Day speech.
"Whatever happens," quipped Nye before Jackson's talk, "it is difficult
to sleep through one of his speeches."
Indeed, as Jackson spoke, there was nary a shut eye at the ARCO Forum.
Jackson, who is president and founder of the Rainbow Coalition, drew
large amounts of applause throughout his speech, pausing only to allow
for occasional whoops and cheers of approval to die down.
Jackson's talk, true to form, was interspersed with biblical analogies
"Jesus was born in the slum," Jackson said, comparing Christ's plight to
that of countless disenfranchised groups in the U.S., "to an unmarried
mother, who didn't have the right to vote, who didn't have the right
pedigree. He was born outside, with the smell of manure. Jesus was born
in the slum, but the slum was not born in him."
Jackson started off his talk by condemning the growing disparity in
wealth between rich and poor Americans.
"For the rich there is no ceiling," Jackson said, "for the poor there is
This disparity, according to Jackson, cut across ethnic lines, despite
"Most poor people are not black or brown; they are white, female, and
young....Most poor people are not on welfare; they work everyday. They
catch the early bus. They sweep the floors. They clean our soiled sheets
when we get sick. And when they get sick, they can't afford to sleep in
the beds which they have made," Jackson said.
Submitted by: Kevin Johnsrude
Jul. 22, 1999
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