Award Acceptance Remarks
by Dr. William R. Harvey
Monday, October 2, 2006 @ 5:30 P.M.
Thank you Dr. Carter. Thank you also for your life and work. I also thank my colleague Dr. Walter Eugene Massey and Morehouse College for bestowing upon me this special award. In all humility, I accept the "Gandhi, King, Ikeda Award" not just for the sake of receiving it but for what it stands for and what it represents. This special award symbolizes "peace" emphasized by three giants - Mohandas Gandhi, Dr. Martin Luther King and Dr. Daisaku Ikeda - who were from three different cultures and countries yet who had a common theme of promoting peaceful solutions to improve the lives of others.
Mohandas Gandhi's "philosophy of nonviolence and his passion for independence began a drive for freedom that doomed colonialism in India". As a result, over 400 million citizens of India gained freedom and independence. Dr. Martin Luther King "led a mass struggle for racial equality that doomed segregation and changed America forever." Dr. Daisaku Ikeda, is a Buddhist thinker, author and educator who believes that "only through personal interaction and dialogue across cultural and philosophical boundaries can human beings nurture the trust and understanding that is necessary for lasting peace."
Again, I am honored to receive this prestigious award. It is a privilege to join the previous award recipients. I truly believe that people in general thrust for peace. "If you want peace, you must be peaceful!" I feel that there are other Gandhis, Kings and Ikedas in the world who are dedicated not to revenge and retribution but to finding peaceful ends. Hopefully, there are some in this room this evening. We are honored to host this exhibit and appreciate the efforts of Morehouse College and its sponsors in sharing this exhibit with us. Thank you.