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Dick Gregory: Legendary Comedian & Civil Rights Activist Passes Away at 84

Dick Gregory was hugely inspired by Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr, the leading civil activists of the century

Dick Gregory
America's legendary comedian Dick Gregory. Wikimedia
  • Dick Gregory has passed away due to a heart attack at the age of 84
  • Gregory was known for his prolific stand-up comedy
  • He used his stage success to voice his anti-racist and anti-war stance

August 20, 2017: Dick Gregory became a popular name in the 1960s as a black comedian who was breaking down racial barriers in the United States.

On Saturday, the famous comedian and civil rights activist died in a Washington DC hospital aged 84. The legend’s death was announced by his son on social media and to the press through the comedian’s representative. Gregory was admitted to the hospital a week before due to bacterial infection, mentioned ANI.

Also Read: World Martin Luther King Jr. Day: Eight inspirational quotes from the champion of civil rights

Dick Gregory was brought up in a poor household that resided in St. Louis. However, he went on to become one of the first black comedians to be loved by a white audience. Further, the legendary comedian used this success and fame to voice concerns over racism and wars.

He received his first major break in 1961 when he got the opportunity to perform at the Playboy Club in Chicago. Although heckled by the audience, Dick Gregory maintained his calmness and went on to perform for hours. This was really a one-night performance for him, however, his great stand up won him two more months at the club.

This further led to his interview with Time Magazine as well as The Tonight Show.

Gregory’s talent led him to be equated with the that of Fred Allen and Will Rogers by the Vogue Magazine in 1962.

His sharp mind coupled with his popularity made him pursue political and civil rights activism. Gregory used his popular image to champion anti-racial movements.

The comedian advocated for feminism and anti-racism. He hoisted voice against the Americans going for war outside their nation’. He was beaten and bruised at social movements and protests.

In 1966, he sought for political office by running for Mayor of Chicago, but his campaign was largely unsuccessful.

Two years later in 1968, he ran for the US Presidency from Peace and Freedom Party. With 200,000 votes, Gregory lost.

Dick Gregory was hugely inspired by Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr, the leading civil activists of the century.

– Prepared by Saksham Narula of NewsGram. Twitter: @Saksham2394

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Launch of women empowerment campaign in Chicago

Launch of women empowerment campaign in Chicago.
Launch of women empowerment campaign in Chicago. IANS
  • Women empowerment campaign launched in Chicago
  • 150 people attended the campaign
  • The campaign was initiated by Indian women in Chicago

CHICAGO, IL, Dec 16, 2017: The Women’s Empowerment Campaign had a very successful media launch on December 9 at the Meadows Club in Rolling Meadows IL.

The event was attended by 150 people, including India’s Consul General in Chicago, Neeta Bhushan, and prominent business and community leaders.

The initiative is a collaboration between Bhushan and the principals of the campaign Rita Singh, Shital Daftari & Dr. Anuja Gupta, who are prominent businesswomen and community members in Chicagoland.

“It was a great idea of the founders to start a women’s empowerment group. It was much needed in Chicago & will go a long way” said Bhushan. The guests enjoyed a beautiful evening with the founders presenting their vision for the WE POWER campaign, presentation of their impressive team & entertainment by Ameya Dance Academy themed around women’s empowerment.

“Chicago needed a strong women’s group to represent the high level of success our community has seen in business, community service, arts & culture. The Women’s Empowerment Group has filled a huge gap & has great potential in Chicago & also nationally” added Bhushan.

The Campaign was designed to create the largest networking & empowerment platform for Indian women in Chicagoland.

“We wanted to form a group that showed the power of Indian women in Chicago & do something that made a positive impact in our community” said the founders.

The philosophy of the founders and leadership team was to build a powerful community of support for Indian women in Chicagoland through this platform. The group plans to celebrate Women’s Day annually as a gala event.

The group has had considerable recognition from the community so far. Many women have expressed an interest in joining the group. They have also received calls from Indian women outside of Chicagoland to join. Women leaders from the Indian community in Florida & New Jersey have expressed an interest in setting up sister organizations in their own town.

“The Indian women community has gotten to a level where we want to make a difference by supporting each other and elevating the status of the whole community” says Dr. Gupta. (IANS)

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