BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - The Birmingham Civil Rights Institute has reverse field again. On Friday, the BCRI Board of Directors decide to give Birmingham native and civil rights activist Angela Davis the Fred Shuttlesworth Human Rights Award.
Rev. Thomas Wilder, the interim head of the BCRI, admitted in good conscious after looking at themselves they could not deny the award to Davis. When the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute decided to honor her with the Shuttlesworth Award, it lead to complaints from several factions.
“The Jewish community has been adversely affected because the only part that was picked up was the Jewish part, but there were African-American people who opposed it. There white people who also had some concerns,” said Rev. Wilder.
The backlash to the decision to not to give the award to Davis lead to three members of the BCRI board resigning. The decision also caused protests, and even Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin criticized the way the decision was handled.
The BCRI issued an apology January 14.
“When we look at the conscious, whether we can face ourselves with the decision we made this is right decision,” Rev. Wilder said.
What was Davis reaction to the news she would be getting the Shuttlesworth Award?
“She wants to take some time to think about it, which we understand. When you look at the effect of what we did, it probably humiliated her in her hometown,” Rev. Wilder said.
Rev. Wilder is hoping all sides, including those who disagree with this decision, will come together and discuss their differences at the Civil Rights Institute.