Angela Davis Reoffered Award By Birmingham Civil Rights Institute After Controversy

Angela Davis has been reoffered an award from an Alabama civil rights museum after it sparked controversy for rescinding the honor this month. 

The Birmingham Civil Rights Institute released a statement on Friday announcing its decision to reaffirm Davis as the recipient of its 2018 Fred L. Shuttlesworth Human Rights Award.

According To Huff Post, Davis was personally invited to accept the award, the institute said, adding that it “respects her privacy and timing in whatever her response may ultimately be.” 

“Dr. Angela Davis, a daughter of Birmingham, is highly regarded throughout the world as a human rights activist,” BCRI President and CEO Andrea L. Taylor said in the statement, citing Davis’ “significance in the movement for human rights, her involvement in raising issues of feminism, as well as her leadership in the campaign against mass incarceration.” 

The institute announced in September that Davis would receive the award, after a board meeting on Sept. 18. 

In early January the BCRI announced that it was canceling a gala planned for February and rescinding the honor for Davis, saying she “unfortunately does not meet all of the criteria on which the award is based,” The Associated Press reported. 

In an interview with Democracy Now this month, Davis, a scholar and civil rights icon born in then-segregated Birmingham, said the reasons behind the decision were not initially made clear to her. 

“When I made requests to them to offer me more substantive reasons for the rescission of the award, I was met with very abstract responses,” she said.

Davis released a statement this month indicating that she later learned her “long-term support of justice for Palestine was at issue.”