A crusader against racism

Evangelist Billy Graham speaking in Tallahassee, FL in 1961. ~State Library and Archives of Florida

David Crumm recalls a chapter in Billy Graham’s life where he embraced integration.

DAVID CRUMM
Read the Spirit

As a journalist, specializing in religion and diversity for more than 40 years, I’ve reported my share of stories about the Graham family. Since his death at age 99 on February 21, I have mourned Billy’s passing. As I read the coverage of his life by my colleagues nationwide, I was struck by one thought: Billy’s legacy would look a brighter if his son Franklin Graham hadn’t doubled-down on the family’s earliest bigotry.

As a journalist steeped in this history, I am convinced that Billy’s lifelong awakening to God’s calling could have led him eventually to even more dramatic acts of inclusion. Now, instead, Billy’s life is tarred by the tragic expressions of contempt for others that continue to flow from Franklin.

Read more and view four short videos about Billy Graham’s courage.

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