November 2010 Ethical Hero – Reverend James Lawson

Published: November 12, 2010

By Jim Lichtman
Read More

On the eve of his assassination in 1968, Martin Luther King, Jr. called his mentor Reverend James Lawson “the leading theorist and strategist of nonviolence in the world.”

Reverend Lawson is a deeply religious man, who served in prison for being a conscientious objector during the Korean War.  After servicing in prison, he went to India and studied the Gandhian movement and nonviolence. Back in the United States, he worked with Dr. King – helping to coordinate the Freedom Rides in 1961 and the Meredith March in 1966.

While working as a pastor at the Centenary Methodist Church in Memphis, Reverend Lawson also played a key role in the sanitation workers strike of 1968.  He went on to a career in the ministry, serving for 25 years as pastor of Holman United Methodist Church in Los Angeles, before becoming pastor emeritus in 1999.  He currently serves a Distinguished Visiting Professor at Vanderbilt University. When Reverend Lawson speaks of nonviolence he speaks authoritatively of his experience in one of the most important nonviolent movements of the 20th century, the U.S. civil rights movement.


Leave a Comment

Read More Articles
The Latest... And Sometimes Greatest
Utter Chaos
Columbia University, House of Representatives, and the New York trial of former president Donald Trump: Pick a topic, and you will see what utter chaos...
April 30, 2024
Man of 1000 Faces vs. . . .
Silent movie legend Lon Chaney was known as the “Man of a Thousand Faces.” So convincing was Cheney—who developed and applied his own makeup—he could...
April 26, 2024
Principle Before Party
“Duty is ours. Results are God’s.”—John Quincy Adams In 1806, after a series of attacks by Britain on American ships carrying goods, Massachusetts Senator John...
April 23, 2024
We Need the Strength of Heroes
The Date: September 28, 1955 The Place: Yankee Stadium The Event: Dodgers/Yankees, Game 1 of the 1955 World Series Every baseball fan has seen the...
April 19, 2024
A Time of Troubles, A Time of Opportunities
It’s getting harder and harder to see the light at the end of a dark, relentless tunnel of anger and war at home and abroad....
April 16, 2024
Conscience of the Senate
Continued from Tuesday’s commentary, I offer two Senate leaders from the past. Tuesday, I spoke of the integrity of Republican John Williams. Today, I offer...
April 12, 2024