Martin Luther King Jr.'s Secret Advisor
The names of many of Reverend Martin Luther King Junior’s associates are well known: Harry Belafonte, Jesse Jackson, Andrew Young. But one of his most important confidants, a Jewish business man from New York named Stanley Levison, has remained largely hidden from public view. From what we know about him, Levison probably would have wanted it that way.
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One of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s most important political advisors, Stanley Levison, has remained largely hidden from public view — even 40 years after King’s death.
A white Jewish lawyer from New York, Levison probably would have wanted it that way: his interest in the civil rights movement was largely selfless, and associations from his past meant that it was in the best interest of the civil rights movement to pretend that he wasn’t involved.
King and Levison met sometime in 1956. King was just coming off of the successful bus boycott in Montgomery, Alabama, an episode that made him a sudden star in some circles. One of King’s biographers, David Garrow, said the civil rights leader would come to New York frequently to raise money — and likely stopped in at some fundraisers where Levison was present.
“He had supplicants of all flavors and stripes,” said Garrow, the author of...
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Timing and Cues
|Let My People Go||Carolina Freedom Fighters||Everybody Wants Freedom.||Battle Records||00:00|