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New England Patriots Owner Speaks at NAACP National Convention

The NAACP's 114th national convention in Boston emphasized the importance of partnerships in advocacy and justice work. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was highlighted as a crucial partner, showcasing the shared values of love for humanity and Christ. The convention also addressed critical issues and featured influential speakers, including Vice President Kamala Harris. Robert Kraft, owner of the New England Patriots, spoke about the rise in anti-Semitism and emphasized the need for unity and support. The message of the convention was that when we work together, we thrive and overcome adversity.

The NAACP recently held its 114th national convention in Boston, under the theme "Thriving Together." This annual gathering serves as a platform to set the tone and direction for all members of the organization across the country for the upcoming year.

The convention emphasized the importance of partnerships in the crucial work of advocacy, protection of humanity, and the pursuit of justice. One notable partnership highlighted was between the NAACP and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Since 2018, this partnership has been instrumental in employment initiatives, social justice thought leadership, and academic access through scholarships. Through their collaboration, they have been able to touch and transform lives worldwide.

Although the NAACP and the church may seem like unlikely allies at first glance, they share intrinsic values that bind and sustain them. These values center around the love of humanity and the love of Christ.

The love of humanity drives them to provide resources and relief to those trapped in cycles of generational struggles and suffering. The love of Christ compels them to undertake this noble work for humanity, as it aligns with their calling, purpose, and pleases their God. This kind of partnership and commitment has the power to uplift the most marginalized, inspire the hopeless, and turn setbacks into opportunities for success. The NAACP's partnership with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints exemplifies the true essence of thriving together.

During the convention in Boston, delegates engaged in discussions about current and critical issues affecting humanity. These included injustices, violated rights, regressive narratives, and unfair laws. Distinguished guests such as Vice President Kamala Harris, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, South Carolina Rep. James Clyburn, and Boston Mayor Michelle Wu graced the event with their presence. Their impassioned speeches left a lasting impact. Another notable participant and partner who addressed the convention was Robert Kraft, the owner of the New England Patriots.

Kraft spoke about the alarming rise in overt hatred and increased assaults on the Jewish community across the nation. These acts of hatred encompassed harassment, vandalism, the spread of antisemitic online content, and even denial of the Holocaust. His panel discussion served as a reminder of our interconnectedness and shared history.

As an example, delegates learned about Julius Rosenwald, a Jewish philanthropist who championed access to education for Black people. Between 1912 and 1937, Rosenwald funded the construction of approximately 5,300 schools in the South. This transformative initiative was born out of a friendship between Rosenwald and Booker T. Washington, the founding president of Tuskegee University. This Black-Jewish alliance focused on restoring academic access and equality that had been stripped away by slavery and segregation. Two individuals from different backgrounds united with a shared vision, leaving an indelible mark on the world.

Rosenwald's schools became educational institutions attended by influential figures such as writer Langston Hughes, opera singer Marian Anderson, poet Maya Angelou, painter Jacob Lawrence, Congressman John Lewis, and slain civil rights activist Medgar Evers.

Furthermore, Kraft introduced the hashtag #standuptoJewishhate and the blue box emoji to rally support and solidarity for the Jewish community.

The message conveyed was profound yet simple – we need each other. This message draws from the lessons of the past and envisions a future of strength, support, and success. When we come together in collective efforts for the greater good of humanity, we become stronger, better, and thrive as a united front. In the face of adversity, our collective fight leads to collective victories.

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