Speech Tommie Smith
It is with noble humility and distinguished social respect that I stand before you this day, upon receiving such a Global translative award.
To the President and esteemed Academic cabinet for this 9th International Peace Prize; the continual struggle for Peace is a revered crossing of the social bridge headed to the city of racial decentralization.
Truly, I am not unaware of the special and broad expressiveness of this award.
It’s a world .of refractory perceptions racial and religious bigotries, prejudices and inequalities; continuous; We must grant close attention to its persistence. It has been a revealing by the writings of one great non- secular orator: “If there is to be peace on earth and goodwill toward man, we must finally believe in the ultimate morality of the universe, and believe that ALL reality hinges on moral foundation”. Racial and systemic hate kills the reality of Love. “Freedom is never voluntarily submitted by the oppressor, it must be demanded with absolutism by the oppressed. A battle is never won if first you don’t engage.
We struggle for Justice, not because we always “Win”. We struggle in the moment, because we believe the truth, the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice”. I believe that we will win. I hope by planning to build relationships with Love and Conversation, will continue and strength our hope for peace.
I was born in the state of Texas, USA, The son of a share-cropper who believed in, doing your job to the best of one’s ability, with malice to no one; and staying on the battlefield for righteousness. Time is an infinite space and working together toward unity must continue indefinitely.
Conversation entails the right to find the truth through “Social Investigation”… I wasn’t allowed to speak because of racial subjection. I had to find a way to communicate with a Silent Voice. The action then silence was heard in the “Silent gesture” during the 19th Olympiad; Mexico City 1968. It was a revealing disclosure felt with the intensity of a defined social progression. No harm intended but, social autonomy individually perceived.
Here I am one half century later still moving in the same direction.
My belief is that overcoming is not a dead issue…
To the cabinet of the 9th International Peace Prize (The Dresden Prize 2018)
I AM Humbled, Thank You