Joseph Lowery

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Lowery in 2008

Rev. Dr. Joseph Echols Lowery (born October 6, 1921) is an American minister in the United Methodist Church and leader in the civil rights movement. He later became the third president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, after Martin Luther King Jr. and his immediate successor, Rev. Dr. Ralph Abernathy, and participated in most of the major activities of the civil rights movement of the 1960s.


  • You gotsta love all God's children!
  • We are one.
    • Speech honoring Martin Luther King, Jr., January 17, 2005, Clemson University
  • I'd like a hamburger and a coke, please. / Sir, we don't serve negroes here. / Ma'am, I don't eat negroes. I'd like a hamburger and a coke.
    • Conversation was originally at a burger joint in Nashville, TN, but the story was recounted at a Speech honoring Martin Luther King, Jr., January 17, 2005, Clemson University.
  • We ask you to help us work for that day when black will not be asked to get back, when brown can stick around, when yellow will be mellow, when the red man can get ahead, man, and when white will embrace what is right.
    • Benediction at inauguration of US president Barack Obama, January 20, 2009, Washington DC.

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