2006 Regular Session

To: Rules

By: Representative Banks

House Resolution 114

(As Adopted by House)


     WHEREAS, Dr. Gene Cornelius Young has made many exceptional contributions to civil rights and has had an outstanding career in the education field and is a renowned speaker; and

     WHEREAS, the son of the loving Mrs. Beatrice Young and the late James I. Young, Dr. Young became an advocate for civil rights at an early age and was arrested twice in 1963 at the age of twelve for his participating in civil rights demonstrations in Jackson, Mississippi; and

     WHEREAS, as a youth who had the desire to promote justice, peace and equality for all, Dr. Young attended the historic March on Washington where Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., delivered his famous "I Have A Dream" speech in August 1963; and

     WHEREAS, Dr. Young, after his first arrest for demonstrating at the age of twelve, stood on a chair and spoke before a capacity-filled audience at the Masonic Temple on Lynch Street just days before the assassination of Medgar Evers who Dr. Young knew well; and

     WHEREAS, Dr. Young's speech as a child was recounted in The Ghosts of Mississippi:  The Murder of Medgar Evers, The Trial of Byron de la Beckwith and the Haunting of the New South which is authored by Maryanne Volleys; and

     WHEREAS, Dr. Young has also been written about in Anne Moody's Coming of Age in Mississippi and in Tim Spofford's Lynch Street:  The May 1970 Slayings at Jackson State College and was given credit in the memoirs of Jackson State University President-Emeritus, Dr. John A. Peoples, for calming a crowd of students in the aftermath of the murders at the college; and

     WHEREAS, a graduate of Lanier High School, Dr. Young graduated with honors from Jackson State University in 1972 and then attended the University of Connecticut in Storrs where he received a Master of Arts and a Ph.D., and later served for six years as the Director of the Black Studies Program at Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois; and

     WHEREAS, a former assistant professor of Speech and English, Dr. Young has also worked in numerous academic and administrative positions at his alma mater, Jackson State University; and

     WHEREAS, Dr. Young, who is the father of Joy Olivia and the late Julius Caza, has continued to be an activist in his community and has served various committees and organizations which include serving on the host committee for the 30th Anniversary Freedom Riders Conference and the national steering committee for the 30th anniversary Freedom Summer Revisited Conference at Tougaloo College; and

     WHEREAS, it is the policy of the House of Representatives to recognize and pay special tribute to outstanding Mississippians such as Dr. Gene Cornelius Young who kept his eyes on the prize and helped secure civil rights for African Americans which in turn promotes equality for all:

     NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, That we commend Dr. Gene C. Young for his exceptional contributions to civil rights and the field of education and extend to him our heartiest wishes for success in all his future endeavors.

     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That copies of this resolution be furnished to Dr. Gene C. Young, Jackson State University and members of the Capitol Press Corps.