The Congress of Racial Equality (CORE)’s 23rd Annual Reception and Dinner in NYC
In commemoration of the Martin Luther King Federal holiday, the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) hosted their 23rd annual reception and dinner at the Hilton Hotel, New York City.
More than 1500 people from all walks of life attended this prestigious event, making it one of the largest events honoring Dr. King in the country.
CORE is one of the oldest civil rights groups in the states. Promoting the banner of ‘truth, logic and courage,’ CORE continues to support equality for all people regardless of race, religion, ethnic background, gender or age.
The event organized by CORE was one to highlight the successes and achievements that CORE have accomplished to date. CORE’s Chairman and host of the evening Roy Innis said, “to do less is to lose the moral high ground and to endanger America. So we aim to do more.”
Honorees of the evening included Ms. Ayaan Hirsi Ali, a former Member of Parliament in The Netherlands and a woman’s rights advocate. Darryl R. Matthews, founder of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, supplying voice and vision to the struggle of African- Americans and people of color around the world. Dr. Frederick K.C. Price, Founder of Inner City Word of Faith Ministries (FICWFM). FICWFM aims to provide fellowship, leadership, guidance and a spiritual covering. And The Mighty Sparrow, otherwise known as the ‘Calypso King of the World.’
Ms. Ali indicated how being in the company of people devoted to fighting for equal rights for Americans of every color, gender and religion was extremely inspiring.
She recollected on Martin Luther King Jr.’s life and remarked on how delighted he would have been to see black and white children going to school, playing and sitting down for meals together.
Ms. Ali further recalled upon the culture in Africa and the reason she stands as honoree. “I am acknowledged here today because CORE wants to take Martin Luther King Jr’s dream beyond racial inequality. CORE wants to be a platform from where the greatest inequality of our time, perhaps of all time, can be battled. This is the gender inequality.”
On a final note Ms. Ali reinstated a message on the life of equality that is present domestically. She highlighted that it should be fought for and not taken for granted. “It is within this culture that it pays to fight for equality. Unfortunately it is this culture that is under threat today. Many of those born into it take it for granted or worse apologize for it… let’s join together to protect this culture of life.”
Additional guests of the evening also included a breathtaking musical performance from the cast of the Color Purple and a recital of the song Lift Every Voice and Sing by American Idol star Chip Days. As both these performances unfolded, the atmosphere was immense. Audiences were clapping, dancing and singing-along. Food for the event proved a huge hit too, with a three course meal and an extensive range of drinks flowing.
A spokesperson for CORE said “the evening was a huge success. Dr. King would be proud. We look forward to many more to come.”
The crowds at this large celebration seemed to relish every second and their presence echoed Dr. King’s words themselves; “A day for when people of all races, religions, classes and stations in life put aside their differences and join in a spirit of togetherness.”
1: Ms. Ayaan Hirsi Ali - CORE MLK 2007 "International Sisterhood Award" (left) with Roy Innis - National Chairman CORE;
2: (from left) Darryl R. Matthews, Sr.- Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity - CORE MLK 2007 "Outstanding Achievement Award”, Dr. Frederick K. C. Price & Dr. Betty Price - CORE MLK 2007 "Outstanding Leadership Award", Roy Innis - National Chairman CORE, Ms. Ayaan Hirsi Ali - CORE MLK 2007 "International Sisterhood Award", "The Mighty Sparrow" Dr. Slinger Francisco - CORE MLK 2007 "Lifetime Achievement Award";
3: Sean Hannity, co-host of Fox News Channel's Hannity and Colmes, with actor Tony Lobianco and his lovely wife and daughter.
Photos by Barry Brown