Musical-Activist Recognized for Social Work June 3, 2015 – Harry Belafonte, the musical-activist that for decades has been active about social issues such as racial equality and poverty, was a confidant to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and fought against Apartheid, was recognized for his great body of work with an honorary Doctor of Law degree…
SEP 17, 2013 – Musical-activist Harry Belafonte, who has been active politically and always at work in community activism for decades, has been rewarded for all his great work with a 2013 Ambassador of Conscience Award by Amnesty International. Harry Belafonte started his activism back in 1950s, where he refused to play down in the southern states, as a protest against the racism. President John F. Kennedy named him cultural advisor to the Peace Corps. He was a confidant of Martin Luther King Jr., and was very active in the civil rights movements in the 1950s and 1960s. He continued his activism and speaking out throughout his career to the present, criticizing the George W. Bush administration and even President Obama; saying he is disconnected from the needs of the poor saying, "I think we will be forever disappointed in what that administration will deliver."
Mr. Belafonte will be given Amnesty International's highest award tonight at Mansion House in Dublin Ireland, by musical-activists Bono and Roger Waters, "recognizing individuals who have promoted or enhanced the cause of human rights through their life and by example." In a statement Mr. Belafonte said, "Since it's birth, I have been devoted to the principles for which Amnesty International stands. It is an honor to receive the recognition being bestowed. Amnesty International's stand on any universal abuse to human rights has been courageous and is our moral compass."
Pakistani teenager women's education and human rights activist Malala Yousafzai is also being bestowed with the honor. Read more on Amnesty International's website here. (photo: Belafonte with Sydney Poitier and Charlton Heston 1963 Civil Rights March, DC – Credit: US Information Agency/CC)
HBO Documentary Covering the Musical Activist's Life "Sing Your Song" Debuts Tonight
Oct 17, 2011 – Harry Belafonte, a long time musical activist, will be featured in a HBO documentary debuting tonight called "Sing Your Song". His musical career has spanned decades and paralleled the civil rights movement, and he always spoke out and worked against social injustice in the world. In a recent Reuters interview, he commented on the Occupy Wall Street protesters saying, "I'm very encouraged by what young people are doing, and I think that the examples that we set with our own lives in the past have been a good measure for young people to begin to evaluate their own lives."
Harry Belafonte was a ground breaker and crossed over the segregated lines to become a star in 1956 with Calypso, and he was the first artist ever to sell over a million copies of a record. His activism caused him to be blacklisted and harassed by the House Un-American Activities Committee, and the CIA and FBI spied on him.
Some of the causes he has fought for over the years has been equality, civil rights, human dignity, and voting rights. In 1985 launched "We Are The World" to help fight famine in Africa. He constantly speaks out politically, and is not afraid at all to speak out against wars, Presidents, and more. When asked if he feared criticism from his remarks he said, "Bring it on. Dissent is central to any democracy."
To read more about the documentary go the HBO website or click here.