Newark Mayor Ras Baraka, the keynote speaker of the 94th annual Jersey City NAACP Freedom Fund Banquet, spoke out against gun laws and “rugged individualism” within the black community.
The Jersey City Branch of the NAACP hosted 94th annual Freedom Fund Banquet on Sunday in Lincoln Park. The event, which was held in tribute for the late poet and civil rights icon Maya Angelou, honored six Jersey City residents:
Rev. Joseph L. Jones – Pastor of the Monumental Baptist Church
Earl Morgan â€“ Columnist for the Jersey Journal
Tyrone Rose – President of Independent Beauty Supply
Eleanor Watson – President & CEO of the Hudson County Urban League
Elnardo Webster Sr. – Director of the 21st Century CCLC Institute of Excellence
Dr. Michael A. Winds – Director of Division A-Jersey City Public Schools and former Lincoln High School principle
Newark Mayor Ras Baraka, the keynote speaker of the event, began by speaking in favor of stricter gun control laws following the accidental shooting of a 9-year-old girl by her 12-year-old brother with an unlawfully possessed gun that was reported stolen in Alabama, according to reports.
Later on in the speech Baraka highlighted the politics of the moment, and the many challenges and issues facing African-Americans, while speaking out against â€œrugged individualismâ€ as a problem within the black community.