julian bond made his transition saturday night. bond was 75 years old, and he died in fort walton, florida, after a brief illness. he was an activist, educator, humanitarian, organizer, politician and writer.
bond was a nashville, tennessee native who attended morehouse college. while in school, bond co-founded the student non-violent coordinating committee (sncc). he became their communications director and was a prominent figure in the civil rights movement.
bond served 20 years in the georgia legislature. his anti-war protests were not supported by some of his political colleagues when america fought in vietnam. he was elected to the georgia house of representatives in 1965, but some angry white members - and seven black members - accused him of disloyalty and refused to let him take his seat.
a unanimous u.s. supreme court ruling in favor of bond confirmed his seat in office. the court said denying him his seat would be a violation of his freedom of speech. generally well-liked and respected, he was not a polarizing figure, but the u.s. role in the war divided americans from all walks of life.
in 1986, bond ran to represent georgia in the house of representatives. he was defeated by john lewis, a fellow activist and sncc co-founder. later, bond served as the board chairman for the 500,000 member national association for the advancement of colored people (naacp) for 10 years. bond declined to run for (another) one-year term in 2010.
bond would often appear as a commentator on various programs like nbc's today show, or the news hour with jim lehrer on pbs, and the tavis smiley show. bond was an adjunct professor at american university, and was a professor of history at the university of virginia.
after his death, lewis said their congressional race created "a little schism for awhile" between them, but nothing could weaken their lasting friendship. lewis said bond was "a wonderful writer, a poet. he had a great sense of humor. he could make you laugh until you wanted to cry. but he worked very hard. he was just smart. just smart. brilliant."
southern poverty law center co-founder morris dees said, "with julian's passing, the country has lost one of its most passionate and eloquent voices for the cause of justice. he advocated not just for african-americans, but for every group, indeed every person subject to oppression and discrimination, because he recognized the common humanity in us all."
president barack obama said, "julian bond was a hero and, i'm privileged to say, a friend. justice and equality was the mission that spanned his life. julian bond helped change this country for the better. and what better way to be remembered than that."
- mark j. tuggle
- harlem, usa
- same-gender-loving contemporary descendant of enslaved africans. community activist, feminist, health educator, independent filmmaker, mentor, playwright, poet & spiritual being. featured at, in & on africana.com, afrikan poetry theatre, angel herald, bejata dot com, bet tonight with tavis smiley, blacklight online, black noir, brooklyn moon cafe, gmhc's barbershop, klmo-fm, lgbt community services center, longmoor productions, nuyorican poets cafe, our corner, poz, pulse, rolling out new york, rush arts gallery, saint veronica's church, schomburg center for research in black culture, sexplorations, the citizen, the new york times, the soundz bar, the trenton times, the village voice, upn news, uzuri, venus, vibe, wbai-fm, wnyc-fm & wqht-fm. volunteered with adodi, bailey house, inc., black men's xchange-new york, colorofchange.org, drug policy alliance, east harlem tutorial program, imagenation film & music festival, presente.org, save darfur coalition, the enough project, the osborne association, the sledge group & your black world. worked on films with maurice jamal & heather murphy. writing student of phil bertelsen & ed bullins. firstname.lastname@example.org.