NEWS

Roy Innis, 82, fiery activist

NY Daily NewsRICH SCHAPIRO NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
ROY INNIS, a polarizing civil rights icon who famously tussled with the Rev. Al Sharpton and a white supremacist on TV talk shows, has died. He was 82. Innis (right) died Sunday at a New York City hospital. The cause was complications from Parkinson's disease, according to the Washington Post. Innis led the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) for more than four decades -- espousing a conservatism that was reviled by left-leaning activists.Innis decried affirmative action and loudly opposed busing as a strategy to combat segregation in schools. A National Rifle Association board member, he also argued that gun control was "meant to deprive you of your freedom."
Innis traced his hardline views to the murders of two of his sons -- 13-year-old Roy Innis Jr., who was fatally shot while playing outside in 1968, and 26-year-old Alexander Innis, who was gunned down in 1982 in an apparent robbery.
His fiery activism led to a rupture in CORE and set him up for a memorable showdown in 1988 with a 34-year-old civil rights leader named Al Sharpton.
A joint appearance on "The Morton Downey Jr. Show" to discuss the discredited rape claims of Tawana Brawley exploded in violence. Innis, a former amateur boxer, called out his adversary for what he called "shenanigans," and Sharpton responded by blasting the claim as a "lot of crap." A shouting match ensued -- and then Innis shoved Sharpton to the floor as the studio audience went wild. That same year, Innis choked a white supremacist on Geraldo Rivera's show -- setting off a melee that ended with Rivera's nose getting broken.
After a two-year stint in the Army, Innis studied chemistry at the City College of New York. He joined CORE in the early 1960s. Innis' bids for public office both ended in defeat. He lost to incumbent Rep. Major Owens (D-N.Y.) in 1986, and suffered a primary defeat to Mayor David Dinkins in 1993.
LireLactu
Parcourir
Rechercher

Sources
Challenges
Courrier international
EL PAÍS
L'Humanité
La Croix
La Vanguardia
Le Figaro
Le Monde
Le Parisien
Les Echos
Libération
NY Daily News
Sciences et Avenir