Sunday, May 4, 2008

Amelia Boynton Robinson

Civil rights leader Amelia Platts Boynton Robinson was born on August 18, 1911 in Savannah, Georgia. Both of her parents were of African, Native American, and German descent.

Robinson began fighting for voting and property ownership rights and education for African Americans in the 1930s along with her husband Samuel William “Bill” Boynton who was president of registration and voting of the Fourth Congressional District. The Alabama Lawyers Association wrote that Samuel William Boynton “laid the historical foundation for the Voting Rights Act.” In 1936, Amelia Boynton Robinson wrote a play called “Through the Years”, a musical drama centered around the life of a freed slave, in order to raise money for a community center in Selma, Alabama that black people would be able to go to. She also served as Home Demonstration Agent for the U.S. Department of Agriculture during the 30s.

Robinson lost her husband Bill to a heart attack in the 1960s, but this did not stop her from continuing to fight for freedom. Robinson’s own home and office served as a meeting place to plan civil rights demonstrations. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and his attendants along with Congressmen and attorneys from across the U.S. were among those in attendance. In 1964, Robinson was the first African American woman from Alabama to seek a seat in Congress and the first woman to run as under the Democratic Party in Alabama. Amelia Boynton Robinson assisted in leading the first march across Edmund Pettus Bridge to Montgomery, Alabama on “Bloody Sunday”, March 7, 1965. She ended up gassed, beaten, and left for dead by Alabama State Troopers. Unfortunately, the gas seared her lungs and permanently damaged her singing voice. The photograph of the injured Amelia, which was seen on the news throughout the world, helped to gain support for the civil rights movement. When the Voting Rights Act was signed and made into law in 1965, Robinson went to Washington D.C. to meet with President Lyndon Johnson after he signed the act.

Amelia Boynton Robinson met Lyndon LaRouche during the early 1980s, and in 1984, she became a board member of the Schiller Institute, which was founded by Lyndon LaRouche and Helga Zepp-LaRouche. Robinson has participated in hundreds of events at the Schiller Institute over the past 17 years, and has encouraged thousands of school-age children to learn about the history of the United States and to work for social change.

In addition to working for social change in the U.S., Robinson has gone to Europe as well. In the spring of 1990, Robinson spoke to thousands of people in Germany about the Martin Luther King movement. Soon after, Robinson won the Martin Luther King, Jr. Freedom Medal on July 21, 1990 for her dedication to fighting for civil rights and human rights. In 1992, Robinson went to Croatia and worked with the Croatian Mothers of Peace, and in 2001, Amelia traveled to Sweden, Denmark, Germany, and Italy to become part of Lyndon LaRouche’s struggle for a New Bretton Woods system and the Eurasian Land-Bridge.

On March 14, 2000, 35 years after the Voting Rights Act became law, the politically active Robinson went to Washington D.C. to speak at a press conference at the National Press Club. As a member of the Michigan Democratic Presidential Caucus, she helped to release their findings that the Gore Democrats were ruining the Voting Rights Act by trying to stop Lyndon LaRouche’s 2001 presidential campaign.

At 96 years old, Amelia Boynton Robinson who has claimed that “it’s better to wear out than to rust out” is still alive today, and has been a registered voter since 1934. She is currently Vice Chairman of the Schiller Institute. People can read more about Amelia Boynton Robinson’s life and achievements in her autobiography titled Bridge Across Jordan, which was published in 1991 by the Schiller Institute. The book focuses on Robinson’s fight for both civil and human rights for American citizens of all racial backgrounds.

Here is an open letter from Robinson to European citizens from March of 2008:

- This Could Be a Treaty of Death for Nations -

March 20, 2008

It is very interesting and even fascinating to daydream (and sometimes in reality) to think of the growth of a family, from a couple, to many children, and from the one couple there are many and many generations throughout the world. And you love them, because they are your relatives, and take interest in them all, and we often speak of their successes. Then, why should any people be compelled to make war against their neighbors or friends and relations?

As a member and co-founder of Schiller Institute, living to give the best future to the BüSo, the LaRouche Youth Movement, and all the youth of the world, I want peace for everyone. But can there be peace without justice? There is no justice where evil men burn their brains out, planning wars and strife, violating the very concept of a nation!

Have you ever heard of the United States South, with its plantation sharecropper system, and our struggle to get people to register and vote throughout the United States? Have you ever heard of Bloody Sunday, on March 7, 1965 in Selma, Alabama, where people were beaten, and many lost their lives just because, when they reached voting age, they wanted to act as full citizens of their native country, the United States? Those are the very rights of man.

Well, that experience should never be repeated again in any country or countries, in a civilized world. With the shedding of blood, with their sweat and tears, human beings have fought to erase the fine print and hidden illegal terms in any contract, constitution, treaty, or governing law that cannot easily be interpreted or understood by all, and which the feudal system of the Dark Age has fought against justice to return.

I invite you to read my autobiography, Amelia Platts Boynton Robinson, Bridge Across Jordan, which now exists in German, Italian, and French. This book will give you a glimpse of what could happen, if you take your God-given right to national sovereignty for granted. The death penalty could be imposed upon one of your own, and he or she could rot in jail for years, while the law is being discussed by faceless bureaucrats. This Lisbon Treaty is a return to slavery, feudalism, and the plantation system: Demand a referendum in your country, now; otherwise, by then, complaining about it will be too late.

It is time to raise the issue: Do you want to be slave countries, or free people? It is as you wish.

It was Martin Luther King in his famous "I Have A Dream" speech on Aug. 28, 1963 in Washington, D.C., who reminded the world that all men are created equal, and that we are all God's children. Then, let us, all over the world, make his dream come true. He gave his life for this truth: Let us give our love, truth, and justice throughout the world.

Wherever you see young people with tables of literature, braving the hot or cold weather, or where they have meetings, please pay special attention: It could save you from a disaster, or it could cause us to stop, think, and discuss before your treaty becomes a Treaty of the Death of Freedom.

I invite you to make a change in the respect for your national constitutions that are being violated, even in your capitals. Cleaning up a constitution can only be accomplished when the citizens living under it fight for that right, and ensure that if it is to be changed, let the citizens of that sovereign country make the changes, not an army of politicians from other countries, who would rob you of your sovereignty, laws, constitution, and your way of life.

Constitutions see that every citizen has the same protections from birth to death, letting no committee or unelected bureaucrat make the laws of your nation. Be proud of who you are, build your nation, and offer help to your neighbors, in the solid tradition your forefathers handed down to you. In this, no country small or large has supremacy over any other, but all are equal in what they have to give to humanity.

How would you or your children feel, knowing that you have gone to war with your neighbor, because the treaty demands it, or if your whole country is put under a dictatorship that you cannot refuse, or you're compelled to go along or approve of the death penalty of someone, who might be one of your citizens, or even of your family. You can only blame yourselves for not fighting for your sovereign country, or forever blame yourselves for losing your rights as a nation, to become a part of the plantation system under the fascist Lisbon Treaty.

My spirit is with you in your struggle,

Amelia Boynton Robinson

This video on YouTube is of Robinson during a Kwanzaa celebration (the purpose of her speech is to empower African Americans and to give them a sense of pride and unity):


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