The Pardu

The Pardu
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Showing posts with label Albert Einstein. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Albert Einstein. Show all posts

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Albert Einstein, Civil Rights and Unknown History


Albert Einstein

Albert Einstein in 1921


Wiki....
Einstein's official 1921 portrait after
receiving the Nobel Prize in Physics.

He was visiting the United States when Adolf Hitler came to power in 1933, and did not go back to Germany, where he had been a professor at theBerlin Academy of Sciences. He settled in the U.S., becoming a citizen in 1940.[7] On the eve of World War II, he helped alert President Franklin D. Roosevelt that Germany might be developing an atomic weapon, and recommended that the U.S. begin similar research; this eventually led to what would become the Manhattan Project. Einstein was in support of defending the Allied forces, but largely denounced using the new discovery of nuclear fission as a weapon. Later, with the British philosopher Bertrand Russell, Einstein signed the Russell–Einstein Manifesto, which highlighted the danger of nuclear weapons. Einstein was affiliated with the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, New Jersey, until his death in 1955.


Facebook piece from the page of Mike Victor.

There is separation of colored people from white people in the United States. That separation is not a disease of colored people. It is a disease of white people. And, I do not intend to be quiet about it.” - Albert Einstein




You may not have known it, but he was a rebel, an outspoken radical, and a social activist. His name was Albert Einstein, one of the most beloved scientists and one of the smartest men in history. He had witnessed the rise of Nazism in Germany and so he knew firsthand how hate, fear, and ignorance can destroy a country. So, when he arrived in America, he was shocked at how Black Americans were treated. “There is separation of colored people from white people in the United States," he said. "That separation is not a disease of colored people. It is a disease of white people. And, I do not intend to be quiet about it.” And, he wasn't. 

Although he had a fear of speaking in public, he made all the effort he could to spread the word of equality, denouncing racism and segregation and becoming a huge proponent of civil rights even before the term became fashionable. Einstein was a member of several civil rights groups (including the Princeton chapter of the NAACP). 

“The social outlook of Americans…their sense of equality and human dignity is limited to men of white skins. The more I feel an American, the more this situation pains me. I can escape complicity in it only by speaking out,” he said. 

So, when he saw injustice, Einstein spoke out. When African-American singer and civil rights supporter Marian Anderson was denied rooms at hotels and forbidden to eat at public restaurants, Einstein invited her to his home. After a bloody racial riot in 1946 in which 500 state troopers with submachine guns attacked and destroyed virtually every black-owned business in a four-square-block area in Tennessee and arrested 25 black men for attempted murder, Einstein joined Eleanor Roosevelt, Langston Hughes, and Thurgood Marshall to fight for justice for the men, acquitting 24 of the 25 defendants. 

Also, when two black men and their wives were murdered in Monroe, Georgia, and justice was not served, Einstein was so outraged, he lent his prominence to actor and activist Paul Robeson’s American Crusade to End Lynching and wrote a letter to President Truman calling for prosecution of lynchers and passage of a federal anti-lynching law. 

He became good friends with Robeson and when Robeson was blacklisted because of his activism against racism, again it was Einstein who opened his home to his long-time friend of 20 years. 


From the Scottsboro Boys case to the numerous attempts to stop the execution of Willie McGee, a black Mississippi sharecropper accused of raping a white woman, and efforts to prevent New Jersey from extraditing Sam Buckhannon, a black Georgian who had escaped a chain gang after serving 18 years for stealing a pack of cigarettes, Einstein used his fame to condemn American racism. 

Einstein would say, "I believe Gandhi's views were the most enlightened of all the political men of our time. We should strive to do things in his spirit: not to use violence for fighting for our cause, but by non-participation of anything you believe is evil." 

Albert Einstein was born March 14, 1879.
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