President Trump nominates Alveda King for Frederick Douglass commission
Appointment comes a year after president hinted that Douglass was still alive
President Donald Trump hugs Alveda King, niece of Martin Luther King Jr., as he delivers remarks after touring the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture on Tuesday. (Kevin Dietsch / Getty Images)
For a president, that has been accused of racism, Alveda
King has been one of his few African-American allies as a constant presence and advocate.
“I do not believe President Donald John Trump is a racist. The economy’s up. Jobs are up in the black community,” she said in a January television interview about her uncle’s birthday. “There is great promise to get a lot of people who have been unfairly incarcerated out.”
“I believe Donald John Trump recognized sincerity for truth and justice for everyone and that is the basis of this appointment,” King told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “I am honored that I can serve America in this capacity.”
Without getting specific, King said the commission will work this year to honor and highlight the work of Douglass, who was born a slave on the Eastern Shore of Maryland on Feb. 20, 1819.
Douglass escaped slavery in 1838, taught himself to read and became a gifted orator, forcefully speaking out against slavery. He wrote at least three autobiographies, championed the rights of black soldiers to fight in the Civil War, and was a confident and friend of President Abraham Lincoln.
Ernie Suggs is an enterprise reporter covering race and culture for the AJC since 1997. A 1990 graduate of N.C. Central University and a 2009 Harvard University Nieman Fellow, he is also the former vice president of the National Association of Black Journalists. His obsession with Prince, Spike Lee movies, Hamilton and the New York Yankees is odd.