Civil rights lion Julian Bond, one of the original leaders of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, has died at 75. When Bond, who was also active in opposing the Vietnam War, was elected to the Georgia House of Representatives in 1965, his white colleagues refused to let him take his seat — only relenting upon order of the Supreme Court in 1966.
From the New York Times obituary:
Julian Bond, a former chairman of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, a charismatic figure of the 1960s civil rights movement, a lightning rod of the anti-Vietnam War campaign and a lifelong champion of equal rights for minorities, died on Saturday night, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center. …
He moved from the militancy of the student group to the top leadership of the establishmentarian N.A.A.C.P. Along the way, he was a writer, poet, television commentator, lecturer, college teacher, and persistent opponent of the stubborn remnants of white supremacy.
He also served for 20 years in the Georgia Legislature, mostly in conspicuous isolation from white colleagues who saw him as an interloper and a rabble-rouser.
Mr. Bond’s wit, cool personality and youthful face became familiar to millions of television viewers during the 1960s and 1970s; he was described as dashing, handsome and urbane.
Read the whole thing. The obituary was written by Roy Reed of Hogeye, Arkansas, a former reporter for the Arkansas Gazette.