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Honoring past and present civil rights action in San Diego

 July 2, 2024 at 1:12 PM PDT

S1: It's time for Midday Edition on KPBS. Today marks the 60th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act. We'll look at the past , present and future of the movement here in San Diego. Here's to conversations that keep you informed , inspired , and make you think. We'll talk about what San Diego was like in the 1960s.

S2: When we imagined the civil rights era , and when we imagined the work of the civil rights , and we imagined the cities of the civil rights and the scenes , rarely do we think of beach towns.

S1: Then civil rights activist Doctor Harold K Brown joins us to talk about his work and experience during the movement. Plus , we'll look ahead at what the next phase of the civil rights movement should look like. That's ahead on Midday Edition. And. Today marks the 60th anniversary of the 1964 Civil Rights Act , which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race , color , religion , sex or national origin. So we're looking at the history leading up to the passage of the law. The people who were part of the movement , The impact of the act and the fight that continues today. We'll start the conversation with a look back at San Diego's history during the civil Rights movement. Joining me now is Monty Williams , professor of church , culture and society at Point Loma Nazarene University. He's also author of Church and Culture Youth Ministry , race , and the Theology of Martin Luther King , Jr. Monte , welcome back to Midday Edition.

S2: Oh , it's really good to be here. Thank you. Jade , thanks for the invitation. Yeah.

S1: Always a pleasure. Also with us is Seth Magliozzi , professor of anthropology and university history curator at San Diego State University. Seth , also welcome back to Midday Edition.

S3: Thanks so much , Jade.

S1: Well , I'm excited to get into this conversation , and I want to start by talking about what the Civil Rights Act is and what it accomplished in 1964. Monty , I'll start with you. Well , you.

S2: Know , in 1964 , there were several states that were resisting the call to desegregate and the Civil Rights Act of 1964. What it ultimately does is that it calls all states to comply with desegregation. As you noted , you know , it prohibits discrimination in public places. It provided for the integration of schools and other public spaces. It made it illegal to discriminate in terms of employment. Mhm.


S2: And , you know , a lot of the findings is it actually impacts one sense of self that the Civil Rights Act of 1964 , it was an attack on the myth that some people are superior and more human , and some people are inferior and less human than others , all on the basis of race , skin color. And this provided a call for the nation to challenge that myth together.


S3: That was a land of equality. And this is both during admission to the Union and then all the way through the 1960s. And it's just not true. Uh , Carol Wayman , who started the black history department at San Diego State in the 60s. He accurately called San Diego the Mississippi of the West. And what he meant by that was this was an area that was actively segregated. Uh , discrimination was everywhere. Part of that stemmed from the fact that so many Southerners had come to Southern California , whereas northerners had come to Northern California. But it also had to do with the business of real estate , where some of the most despicable segregation and discrimination that was going on was being pushed by San Diego and Southern California realtors. And so you have a time where black San Diegans could only live in a couple of neighborhoods , couldn't get jobs at many stores , couldn't try on clothes. It was actively segregated. And just to set the stage when Doctor Martin Luther King Jr arrives in San Diego comes out to San Diego State , he's met with protesters. He was not warmly embraced. He was called a communist. And there were all sorts of people handing out leaflets and arguing against him being here.

S1: You all have done a great job of painting the picture of the climate , both here in San Diego and across the country. And when Doctor King visits San Diego , he specifically stops in at college campuses. What do we know about his visits , Seth ? Yeah.

S3: When it comes to the San Diego State visit , he had been to San Diego a couple of times before and had been invited many times , and so there was a lot of excitement. But at San Diego State , because it's virtually an all white campus , he's not well received. And what's so fascinating about this is that he's such a skillful speaker that the speech he ends up giving at San Diego State , it's very analytical. It's more of a of a lecture than an inspirational speech , very different from the speech. He then gives it cal Western later in the day. He it's almost lawyerly the way he has a three point program. Um , and he hammers through these points that the American dream is the world dream. And then he gets that notion that Monique brought up earlier of debunking any notion of superior and inferior races. And then the third point , he says , is act now. And some of his best quotes from this speech are you can't legislate integration , but you can legislate desegregation laws can't make you love me , but they can keep you from lynching me. Wow.

S1: Wow. And he gave the the remaining awake through a Great Revolution speech at Cal Wester , now known as Point Loma Nazarene University. Montag. What was the impact of his presence at Cal Western ? And talk about the difference in those two speeches and the locations. Mhm.

S4: Mhm.

S2: That speech is actually very much a sermon. It does have a different feel with the speech there at San Diego State. He's making these arguments and debunking logical moves people make. He says things like , we can't use the tragic results of segregation as an argument for its continuation. And that sets the stage for him now to come in later on in in that day , to have a speech that's much more about painting a picture of who people have been and who we need to be. And he relies on a sermon that he has given in many places , both before and after the time that he was here. Uh , it's called remaining awake through a great , uh , revolution. And here what he's saying is people are currently in a moment where they have to make some important decisions , and there is a real temptation to simply , you know , stick your head in the sand , close your eyes , say that it doesn't matter. Say things like , well , you know , politics aren't my thing. And he's saying , this is this is not a moment to do that. This is a time to become aware that justice is on the line. And it's interesting that he uses this language of remaining awake language around being woke or staying woke. It's it's often attacked now. It's misused to mean all kinds of things it didn't mean. But what he's saying is you have to remain aware when justice is on the line. Don't. Don't turn away out of comfort and convenience. Pay more attention. Yeah.

S1: Yeah. Part of your jobs as professors , you know , is to teach these important lessons in history. And , you know , when we fast forward to today , there are efforts across the country to axe ethnic studies or ban black history in curriculum , especially in Florida. I mean , what are your reactions to those things , and how do institutions push back on the erasure of history and how does the fight continue ? Because it seems like there are a lot of aspects of the Civil Rights Act that are being eroded.

S3: I think this is one of the most powerful questions when you engage with this history in that , when you look at the original words of Doctor King's speeches , you get inspiration that answers some of the misinformation and propaganda that's out right now , especially attacks on ethnic studies , especially attacks on immigration , especially attacks on equality. When I teach these speeches to my students , I watch them to see what what resonates with them. And when Doctor King is talking about integration as excellence as everybody bringing something to the table. I remember reminded of this one passage that I absolutely loved , because my students just light up when they hear this part of the speech from Western. Doctor King says if it falls your lot to be a street sweeper , sweep streets like Michelangelo painted. Sweep streets like Beethoven , composed music. Sweep streets like Shakespeare wrote poetry. Sweep streets so well that all the host of heaven and earth will have to pause and say. Here lived a great street sweeper who swept his job well. And the reason I love this is because it pulls us away from these inflammatory phrases that people have a gut reaction to , whether it's political correctness or woke things that they're just ready to dismiss , and they start feeling this inspiration that is about unity , that it's about integration , and that it's about finding commonality. And so that's what I see is the answer. And that's the optimism I have is with today's youth. Yeah.

S2: Yeah. And at the same time , though current white supremacist groups the number one target they have are young people. They target young people through video games , they target young people through , you know , rallies. And sometimes , unfortunately , because of the way misinformation works , because of the polarization that's at play , a lot of young people don't realize what they're a part of until they're deep in it. And so it is true that , you know , on a broad sense , young people do see through this , but young people are still young people. There's still people being formed. There's still people in need of mentors who are dedicated to justice and freedom. They still need mentors who are dedicated to that discerning work. And I think that still remains our job. You know , when it comes to this idea of removing historical , the challenge to ethnic studies or wanting to stop teaching history around racial injustice ? I mean , King was aware that that people were ready to sleep on those things , even in his day when he was in Saint Augustine. What they would do as part of their work of of protests , of their demonstrations , they would lead these nightly pilgrimages to an area of town called the Old Slave Market , and it was a place where African American people were sold as slaves. And this spot was like a celebrated spot in the town. And what they would do is they would lead pilgrimages from a church in town. They would walk down , turn the corner , make their way to that spot and pray , of course , the way they are. And the way back was filled with a lot of violent resistance. But their point was to say , this place , this space , this ground we walk on , is filled with buried stories that need to be told and not forgotten. And it's it's us who have to tell the story , because the moment we stop telling it , the eraser comes out. And people don't want to deal with these realities. And what happens when the eraser does its work and the erasure takes place is we're left with realities of injustice and the inability to talk about why we are where we are.

S3: Monty brings up a very important point that it's up to us and that we need to be strategic. And I would add , anniversaries are crucial. Um , and so this is on us to not only emphasize these important anniversaries , but also tie it into living history. Some of those civil rights leaders in San Diego , like Hal Brown , Hal is is in San Diego. He is still incredibly vibrant and smart and well-spoken , and he gives speeches that talks about not only racial equality , but that economic equality in opportunity is the key fight for today's world. And so I think those those two things not only being strategic with anniversaries , but also having that direct tie to living history , that is what really brings the point home.

S1: Very much. True. And so , you know , the work didn't stop in 1964. It continues today. And I appreciate you both picking up the baton. Also , you mentioned Hal Brown. I'll be talking with him later this hour. I've been speaking with Monty Williams , professor of church , culture and society at Point Loma Nazarene University. He's also the author of Church in Color Youth Ministry , race , and the Theology of Martin Luther King , Jr. Monty , thank you for joining us.

S2: It's a pleasure to be here for sure.

S1: Also , Seth , Mario's professor of anthropology and university history curator at San Diego State University. Seth , thank you for being here.

S3: It's a pleasure. Thanks.

S1: Coming up , Harold K Brown , one of San Diego's civil rights leaders , shares his childhood experience and how those experiences motivated him to stay in the fight.

S5: Those things all piled up in my mind and they stayed there , and I resented them , and I hated them , and I decided that I would speak up.

S1: His path to healing when we return. Welcome back to KPBS Midday Edition. I'm your host , Jade Hindman. Today on the show , we are honoring the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. We just learned about Doctor Martin Luther King Jr's visit to San Diego universities. But the movement wasn't just about leaders like Doctor King. Activists across the country were involved , including those right here in San Diego like Harold K Brown. Back in 1971 , Hal became the first black administrator at San Diego State University. A year later , he helped establish the Afro-American studies program , now called the Department of Africana Studies. He also organized local movements to push for desegregation in San Diego neighborhoods , and that work continues still today as Hal fights for civil rights and economic development. Last week , I had the honor of speaking with Hal in studio. I began by asking what the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 meant to him.

S5: Well , it's interesting because of course , we all rejoiced. We were very actively involved in the civil rights movement at that time. So I was leading , still leading the civil rights organization , of course. But we rejoiced , but we had our hands still full. In 1964. We were still actively , uh , uh , picketing and demonstrating against the same things of discrimination and that that the 1964 Civil Rights Act was addressing. We were still involved in doing the kinds of things that would eventually be alleviated because of the passage of such a great , great. Um , uh , a bill , I mean , so comprehensive and covers so much. And we were I mean , we were just overjoyed when that was passed. Yeah.

S1: Yeah. And it's far reaching to I think a lot of people kind of miss that.

S5: Yes , it is far reaching and it just covers , you know , everything from , uh , discrimination and housing and discrimination and employment and in , in , uh , facilities , uh , accommodations , uh , social accommodations , uh , which is , which is a real another story. But yeah , it just covered , you know , so much and , uh , although it wasn't , uh , implemented right at that , that moment , but it was , it covered a whole area , I mean , and , and it's regarded as one of the most significant pieces of legislation that we ever had in America. Yeah.

S1: I mean , like , you know , I'm thinking title nine , uh , even immigration , all of those.

S5: Things , all of that came under. Yeah. Yeah.

S1: Well , you were you were very young. Okay. When you became active in the civil rights movement , your call to activism as a student was really born out of lived experiences.

S5: I need to start with , uh , in my first grade. Uh , we all lived in the black community. Of course. This is this is back in those days where housing was completely segregated. And we lived in a I grew up in an alley in Pennsylvania. My first grade , uh , we were passing. We had to walk over a good distance to get to our school for black kids. And on the way , I can recall a white man at the top of the this factory. They should look out their windows. And , uh , as we were going by and call us , uh , hey , you and Bob , you know , and at that time I said , what's that ? I've never heard that word before. And so that was my first introduction. And then when I graduated from , um , from high school , there was a picnic to celebrate the graduates at a place that's , uh , about 30 , 30 miles outside of New York. And when we heard that , uh , well , we can all you can go , but you can't swim in the pool , huh ? So I said , forget it. And then we decided we weren't going to that place. So , you know , that went on , uh , on up through college , running into into situations that I was a chairman of the Constitution Committee. I was on the student government , student government. I was my responsibility was to review all the whatever it took for each organization on campus to have the. I reviewed their bylaws , and the bylaws stated that the fraternities and sororities were for white students. And so that was another , um , you know , knock in the head when I started speaking to groups about the treatment of blacks in America. And then I was approached by a person , another black fellow , who he said that they were starting. a civil rights organization by the name of the Congress of Racial Equality. And would I be interested ? And I said , of course I would. So I joined there. Then I became I became the president or the chairman of that group. And from then on , it was strictly involvement in the civil rights movement.

S1: In that group that you were involved in after graduating college , you really fought to integrate neighborhoods in San Diego County.

S5: When I started , one of the first demonstrations that we had was when , uh , President John Kennedy came to San Diego to speak here at San Diego State. And we wanted to show him that there were these conditions of segregation and discrimination right here in San Diego. And we held I was on El Cajon Boulevard , I think was where they brought him down to Oklahoma Boulevard. And so we stood there with signs expressing that we how we felt. And this was this was there was a lot of screaming and discrimination here and segregation here as well as in the South.


S5: But the interesting part about San Diego at that time was that in the white community , that was the white community was very conservative , and it's still conservative by the very conservative and closed in a lot of ways to blacks. But when we when we , uh , decided that we were going to really push hard for integration. In San Diego and for , uh , elimination of job discrimination and elimination of , uh , of , uh , of living facilities like hotels and things. You know , the big hotel , big in a hotel in San Diego was the El Cortez. And , uh , would not allow , uh , blacks to live there. And so this whole thing was disturbing back then in a way that there wasn't much that we could do. We had no power. And like in the city council and board of supervisors and all that , we had no one on those things. And so it was it was tough. But when we demonstrated and we demonstrated that at the same as the demonstrations all over the country were taking place , and not only in the Congress of Racial Equality , which is around the country , but they were the kinds of demonstrations that we had to take according to the resistance that we had , which meant we had the picketing online picketing , we had to sit ins , and we had even coins at the banks because no banks had any blacks or Mexicans or Spanish. I mean , it was always very much close. And so we took on the Bank of America , the largest bank in California. And that was a tough , tough , tough assignment.

S1: Yeah , yeah. It was. My grandmother was the first black bank teller in Saint Louis , and they told me how people they used to have to close the blinds because people would drive by to , to look and say , oh , there she is , you know. So. Um.

S6: Um.

S1: I mean , with such resistance.

S5: One was that , you know , I watched my mother and my brothers and sisters and my friends , uncles and aunts and all of us in the black community were restricted to the living of those conditions there. And the. No , no no jobs hardly were available. If they were , they were the lowest jobs that you could you could get. And so I watched that as I was growing up. And then the , the incidents that I mentioned to you earlier , those things all piled up in my mind and they stayed there and I resented them and I hated them. And I decided that I would speak up when I saw the opportunity to get involved in the civil rights movement. I just jumped at the chance , because then I could express all of those feelings that I had inside. And so that's what I did. And I had an opportunity to to to work with the Congress of Racial Equality as its local chairman and Western regional chairman. That was why when when I was arrested several times and I served jail sentences and all of those things , I mean , it was it was it was worth it every minute. And I think , as you mentioned , I'm still involved in doing those kinds of things because it's just such a part of me.

S1: You really , in your own way , kind of moved things along to economic development for San Diego's black community and eventually became a crucial part of your platform.

S5: You should understand that in the United States of America , there are two very important things that that makes this country go , and that's the vote and money. And once we learned that , we realized that in the black community , we don't have much money. We can't influence voting. We didn't have the , the , the , the politicians in place. We were somewhat powerless when it came to participating in this United States of America and , and the , uh , economic system of capitalism. And so and when I formed this organization called the Black Economic Development Task Force , prior to , to forming the , uh , the economic development , uh , department here , no one , I mean , blacks didn't had never even heard that back in those , those years. They were so new. And so I just knew that that was the area that was going to be the most important challenge. During the Community Economic Development program. We were having an outing and I wrote a paper for that , and I stated in the paper that the black economic development would be the next phase of the civil rights movement , and that was the years , years ago. And here we are. Economic development. We we need to participate as , uh , we got , um , we got a late start or almost a no start back during the times when from slavery to Jim Crow and on up , and we realize that we started so far back , but we've got to run even faster than we've been running , and we've got to come together and run together and play together. We're at the beginning right now. So.

S1: Um , where do you think we are in the civil rights movement today is so many policies. Um , chip away at the progress made.

S5: I think where we are is we're in a phase of naivete. People are pretty naive about what's happening today. You know , they're chipping away after all the gains of the 1960 of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. All of those gains are being chipped away by the Republican Party. Removal of the of any knowledge of of slavery and stuff in in the schools. Uh , taking America back to what way it was. And what does that mean to people like me ? It means going back to the Jim Jim Crow days. And unfortunately , our younger people , most of them don't even know anything about Jim Crow. So what we need , you know , we need to do , is to speak up and speak out and get up and get out and work and work and work. Because if we're going if , if , if , if these people , the Republican Party is trying to take us back to the way America was , I mean , that's what America was after slavery. It was Jim Crow , which was the blockage of any movement for blacks in this country. And it also applied to uh , uh , other people of color as well. You couldn't move forward because you didn't have the you couldn't get the jobs to , to provide the money to buy homes and buy food and buy all those other things , you were limited. So this is this is such an important area , uh , of time. It's it's just like the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was important. We need another civil rights Act today that speaks to the disenfranchisement of of black people. You know , we're back at a time where we're in the little power that we have gained. They're threatening to take it away. The Republican Party is threatening to take it away from us.

S1: You know , when we look at the erosion of the Civil Rights Act , you know , we see the attack on diversity , equity and inclusion. We see the attack on , um , learning about ethnic studies in schools. We see all these barricades to voting and suppression laws in some states. Um , what do you have as a message to share with politicians , public figures who hold the power to make real change.

S5: I take a little slightly different approach. I call I call it reparations. I think that we knowing that we have built in America this foundation just like a built in a house on foundation , the foundation was atrocious. Slavery and everything that followed from slavery. And so I'm pretty sure that we need to find a way to remedy all of the stuff that's happened to black people and others in here , and I don't know how we can do it other than through education and other than the vote , because I think those are the two elements that we are so , so deficient in , not only vote , but help to support people who would vote in according to our wishes and desires. I think we that's that's what we , we call some empowerment. If we can get people like that and in these positions around the country , then we won't have to worry about anybody threatening to take us back to the Jim Crow , uh , area.

S1: That was my conversation with Harold K Brown , civil rights leader and educator. To learn more about how story you can read his 2019 book , Fighting the Color Monster. Coming up , I'll look at what the next phase of the civil Rights movement looks like here in San Diego. You know , we help people to uncover and discover and aspire and imagine.

S7: Ways to create a better world , where human dignity is the baseline for how we treat each other , as opposed to something that we aspire to see. More to come when.

S1: KPBS Midday Edition returns. Welcome back to KPBS Midday Edition. I'm Jade Hindman to continue our conversation about the Civil Rights Act of 1964. We're shifting our attention to broader efforts of civil and human rights activists. The 1964 act is a foundation for the rights we have today , but the fight is far from over. Joining me now is the one of Richmond , the board vice president of Alliance San Diego. Their group advocates for civil and human rights and political engagement in San Diego. Luna. Thank you for joining me today. Hi.

S7: Thank you for having me.

S1: So glad you're here. So Alliance does significant work with communities of color and immigrant communities in San Diego. How does the Civil Rights Act of 1964 continue to ensure the liberties of these communities ? Wow.

S7: Well , you know , these days it feels like it does its best , the best it can under the circumstances to ensure those liberties. Um , and I say that because , you know , right now we're in a time where many of those liberties are being attacked or curtailed. I think the Civil Rights Act said it laid the foundation for , you know , people to be able to vote and have , you know , enjoy theoretical full citizenship in this country. And it's something that we can point to Aspirationally , as we look at where we go from here and how we continue to move forward. Because , as you know , nothing is static. Things are always going to change. They're either going to get better or they're going to get worse. So , you know , we're thinking , aspirationally , how do we make things better ? Yeah.

S1: And , you know , the civil rights we have today were achieved because of people like Hal Brown , who we talked to previously. Yeah , about his work here in San Diego. I'm curious how the efforts and work from the civil rights movement are still echoing in today's civil rights advocacy.

S7: I mean , a big part of like right now , we're looking at making sure everyone who has the right to vote gets access. So we're supporting and promoting an inclusive democracy , looking at how to make sure that there's full participation in this system , because without it , how do we make it better And how do we protect people from the tyranny of the majority ? Right.


S7: Now they're leveraging social media more. The other part , though , in terms of like social action and being able to get people to turn out , for example , at a city council meeting or a county board meeting , board of supervisors meeting. Tools like social media are really helpful in reaching more people more quickly.

S1: Yeah , well , and talk to me about that because when when in talking to Hal , you know , he was emphasizing the importance of having one voice to communicate the messaging and sort of control the narrative.

S7: Um , because the United Civil Action , we're very clear on like what your demands are. What what a win looks like. Um , it's very clear , especially when faced with any opposition or even just inquiry , um , that the message is clear and that the results are moving in the direction that you're trying to move in when people don't , you know , take advantage of the opportunity to have some consistency in messaging , then , um , you know , there's all kinds of like , oh , well , we could do this or we could do that. A good example , you know. Well , I do appreciate that Juneteenth is a national holiday. There are a lot of other , um , rights that I think are more pressing right now , like just the right to be able to walk down the street free from harassment by law enforcement is an important right , right.

S1: Well , in the present day movement for civil rights , there's also that connection to human rights.

S7: I mean , you know , to oversimplify it is , you know , basically a veneer of civility , right ? Almost rights to like things and places and to do stuff. Right. Whereas human rights is honoring the humanity in everyone. And I think some of the challenges with civil rights is they get locked into , um , categories. Right ? Like , you know , there's a right for these people who fit this description to be able to do this or right for people who fit this description , to not have to experience that , whereas human rights are seeing that just because you were born and you're human , um , you have a right to a level of dignity and respect and honor , um , just to honor your humanity. And when we do that , a lot of the , um , critics of civil rights , which I will continue to say , civil rights are very important. I just would like to see us go further , um , when we start to take away the boxes in the categories , then you start to kill some of the arguments being made by people who feel left out of the conversation when you talk about civil rights. Mhm.

S8: Mhm.

S1: Well , I know that you often look to the future.

S7: Um , yeah. I'm an Afro futurist. Exactly.

S1: Exactly. So , you know.

S6: Uh , it.

S1: Plays a big role in the way people see black identity agency and freedom.

S7: You know , it includes our literature , culture , the aesthetic and social justice and equity. And it's basically looking at the future in a way that includes black people in roles other than subservient. And so I like to tell people that Afrofuturism is inclusive futurism , because , you know , I work with a global network of afrofuturist , and none of us talk about like creating a black planet , which , you know , there's a fear of a black planet. Was a Public Enemy album. Um , we're really looking at , you know , creating space where everyone can thrive. And , you know , part of that is , you know , breaking these barriers and creating or co-creating an aspirational future , um , where , you know , maybe we've done something to reduce the social determinants of wellness and where people have access to , you know , things like fresh produce without it even being a conversation or consideration. Clean drinking water , fresh air , um , really like basic things that as a human , we should support everyone wanting to have and having access to. Of course , there's opportunities and , you know , and even lifestyle like the freedom to like just be your actual self. Yeah.

S1: Yeah.

S7: Right. And everything was like , you know , you had to get flyers , you had to like fax press releases and you had to do all these , like , analog things. Right now , between the internet , artificial intelligence and virtual reality , the opportunity for future generations to connect and build and engage in being global citizens are exponential. They're growing at a rate that , you know , the possibilities go beyond anything I personally can imagine. And I get excited by the fact that many of our young people are already living out loud what we wanted for them , what we dreamed about , what Doctor King talked about in the bounced check speech , and you know that everybody calls it the dream speech , but it was really the about a bounced check. And there was this little bitty portion where he talked about his dream , and the dream was the part that people felt comfortable with. But , you know , our kids , you know , I'm proud of them. The kids are all right. In fact , they're so all right that it's the reason that we see , like , so much resistance to this progress , because it's not what a lot of people envision for the future.

S1: And , you know , as we talk about civil rights there , there are a lot of parallels between civil rights and human rights. And it is something that is global.

S7: We have workshops that we host at our site , but we will also go work with other organizations to customize workshops on human dignity , where we teach about the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. And you know what it contains , how it's different from the Constitution , which , you know , as we know , there are many things that were legal that weren't necessarily morally right. And , you know , we help people to uncover and discover and aspire and imagine ways to create a better world where human dignity is the baseline for how we treat each other , as opposed to something that we aspire to see.

S1: I've been speaking with LaWanda Richmond , board vice president of Alliance San Diego. Luana , thank you so much for joining me today.

S7: Oh , thank you for having me.

S1: That's our show for today. I'm your host , Jade Hindman. Thanks for tuning in to Midday Edition. Be sure to have a great day on purpose , everyone.

Ways To Subscribe
Harold "Hal" Brown at a C.O.R.E. protest in San Diego, Ca, 1964.
The San Diego History Center
Harold "Hal" Brown at a Congress of Racial Equality protest in San Diego, 1964.

The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was signed into law on July 2 of that year by President Lyndon Johnson. The law prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex or national origin.

To achieve that win for civil rights, people across the country, including those in San Diego, organized and came together for the movement.

Harold K. Brown and Jade Hindmon in the KPBS Midday Edition studio.
Elaine Alfaro
Jade Hindmon (left) spoke with Harold K. Brown (right) in the KPBS Midday Edition studio about his civil rights advocacy work, June 28, 2024.

On Midday Edition Tuesday, two professors dive into the history of the Civil Rights Movement in San Diego, including visits from Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. to local universities.

Then, Harold K. Brown shares his lifelong civil rights and economic development work. The Knowledge, Education and Empowerment Program (KEEP) at San Diego State University is named after Brown.

And we hear about the civil and human rights work that Alliance San Diego is doing today.