AL SHARPTON Biography - Activists, Revolutionaries and other freedom fighters


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Name: Al Sharpton                                                                     
Born: 3 October 1954 Brooklyn, New York                                               
Alfred Charles "Al" Sharpton Jr. (born October 3, 1954) is an American Baptist         
minister, political and civil rights/social justice activist, and radio talk           
show host. In 2004, Sharpton was a candidate for the Democratic nomination             
for the U.S. presidential election.                                                   
Sharpton hosts his own radio talk show, Keepin It Real and makes regular               
guest appearances on The O'Reilly Factor and MSNBC.                                   
Sharpton's supporters praise "his ability and willingness to defy the power           
structure that is seen as the cause of their suffering" and consider him "a           
man who is willing to tell it like it is". Donna Wilson, host of a talk radio         
program on WWRL in New York City, said of him that "Al Sharpton was born to lead".     
Sharpton's critics describe him as "a political radical who is to blame, in part,     
for the deterioration of race relations". Conservative David Horowitz has             
called Sharpton an "anti-Semitic racist", sociologist Orlando Patterson has           
referred to him as a racial arsonist, and liberal newspaper columnist Derrick         
Z. Jackson has called him the black equivalent of Richard Nixon and Pat               
Sharpton sees much of the criticism as a sign of his effectiveness. "In many           
ways, what they consider criticism is complimenting my job," said Sharpton. "An       
activist's job is to make public civil rights issues until there can be a             
climate for change. So when people get angry at me for raising these issues and       
making them public, well, that's my job! That’s what I'm supposed to do. If I       
could not get the public's attention on an issue, then I'm not a good activist."