Atlanta Welcomes Addition of National Center for Civil & Human Rights
On a hot and humid Monday, leaders, media networks, visitors, and human/civil right activists gathered to celebrate the opening of the new “National Center for Civil and Human Rights.” The center opened at 10 a.m., after a public ceremony of speeches, and the singing of "We Shall Overcome."
Over a decade ago, Joseph Lowery, former president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, and his late wife Evelyn, first approached then-mayor Franklin in the early 2000’s, with a wish list for the project, “reported by Katie Leslie of the AJC.” The dream was realized today, as the exited and anxious crowd stood by to listen to Congressman John Lewis, Mayor Kasim Reed, former mayor Shirley Franklin, just to name a few. Mayor Reed thanked both Franklin, and CEO Doug Shipman, for helping to bring the museum to life.
The about us page on the official website for The Center for Civil and Human Rights reads, “The Center for Civil and Human Rights in downtown Atlanta is an engaging cultural attraction that connects the American Civil Rights Movement to today’s Global Human Rights Movements. Our purpose is to create a safe space for visitors to explore the fundamental rights of all human beings so that they leave inspired and empowered to join the ongoing dialogue about human rights in their communities.”
The big hit of the day seemed to be the interactive exhibit depicting the sit-ins at segregated lunch counters. It provides visitors a simulation of the protests and the reaction to them. Visitors place on headphones to hear the recorded voices against the demonstrators, while experiencing a vibrating jolt, leaving the impression that someone has just kicked the visitor's chair. I must admit, the experienced left me draw dropped, never the least.
Official Website: http://www.civilandhumanrights.org/
Mailing Address: 250 Williams St, Suite 2322 Atlanta, GA 30303 | Venue Address: 100 Ivan Allen Jr. Boulevard, Atlanta, GA 30313
The center is located near the World of Coca-Cola and Georgia Aquarium
Directions and Parking: http://www.civilandhumanrights.org/directions-and-parking