Rhetoric, Religion and the Civil Rights Movement, 1954-1965

By Davis W. Houck; David E. Dixon | Go to book overview
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§18 Reverend Robbins Ralph

The Reverend Robbins Ralph (1907–2002) lived a long life heavily involved in the ministry. Coming from a long line of Congregationalist ministers, Ralph attended Beloit College and Yale Divinity School before serving churches in Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Florida. Reverend Ralph also held the position of conference minister of the Florida Congregational Christian Conference for 19 years.

In his sermon to his Madeira Beach, Florida congregants, Ralph lays out a powerful indictment against the cruel forces of discrimination in a speech dripping with righteous sarcasm. Ralph begins his speech discussing the reasons that he is glad that he has been born white. One by one he lists out freedoms and privileges that are available to him and denied to blacks based purely on the color of one’s skin. Reverend Ralph discusses how this blatant discrimination touches every aspect of life from the serious to the mundane. From cars to homes to

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Rhetoric, Religion and the Civil Rights Movement, 1954-1965
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