Four Great Modern Legal Cases that Changed American Law and Why they Still Matter
Before he ascended to the Supreme Court in 1967, Thurgood Marshall took four equal rights cases before the United States Supreme Court, winning them all. In 1944, he was victorious in Smith v Allwright, which outlawed discrimination in Democratic primaries. In 1948, the Marshall-led Shelley v. Kraemer case forbade housing owners from inserting into deeds that blacks could not purchase their property upon selling. In 1950 Sweatt v. Painter forced the University of Texas to integrate its law school by admitting a black student. And in 1954 came the titanic Brown v. Board of Education ruling which desegregated the American public school system.
If there is a legal and historic figure from the past who continues to embody the best of American jurisprudence it is Thurgood Marshal, who went from crusading lawyer for the oppressed all the way to a seat on the United States Supreme Court. In his seminal cases that changed American law, we get a sense of why perseverance, grit, and decisiveness have always been hallmarks of great lawyering. Those tenets continue to resonate powerfully in an ever-changing America. Wil Haygood explains why.
The Butler: A Witness to History
This is the amazing story of how journalist and author Wil Haygood tracked down the unknown White House butler Eugene Allen, a story which led to the making of the major motion picture, The Butler. The 2013 movie features seven Academy Award winners, among them Forest Whitaker, Jane Fonda, Oprah Winfrey, Cuba Gooding Jr., Vanessa Redgrave, and Robin Williams. Haygood served as an associate producer of The Butler.
Little Wil Haygood: From Poverty to the Big Screen
Wil Haygood was born to a single mother in Columbus, Ohio. He became the first in his family to receive a college degree. With a honed writing talent, he became a nationally recognized journalist and biographer. His career has taken him around the world and to the backlots of Hollywood, where his work has attracted the attention of some of the leading entertainment figures of our times.
History, Race & Culture of the United States
Wil Haygood has been called one of America's "canniest cultural historians." As journalist and biographer, he has explored the social and historical dynamics of this country as few modern chroniclers have done in books, magazine articles, and award-winning newspaper coverage. It is little wonder that Bostonian magazine once referred to him as a "Young Literary Lion."
The Beauty of the Presidency
In this fascinating presentation, Wil Haygood shares with audiences how American presidents have confronted the country's social issues. He draws on his many visits to presidential libraries in over his years as a biographer—and his dozens of interviews of former White House officials across many administrations—in offering insights into presidential politics.
A Writer’s Travels Around the World
From the oil crisis in Nigeria to the war-torn lands of Somalia and Liberia, from the richness of obtaining a South African education, to the heroism of Esther in Zimbabwe—an AIDS-afflicted woman who cared for 10 nieces and nephews and received an outpouring of international help because of Wil Haygood's reporting—this is an evening of scintillating and inspiring stories from around the world. Haygood's journeys as a globe-trotting foreign correspondent (he was once taken hostage in Somalia by rebels) will enthrall you.
Finding New Confidence in America
“Racism is a moral crime visited upon our children and that we Americans have to continuously and vigorously fight against it.” -Wil Haygood
Though the post-election America may seem dim, hope is not lost within our country. Author of the award-winning article A Black Writer’s Journey into Poor White America, Wil Haygood explains that there is light within our broken country that causes us to keep fighting. From years of reporting, interviewing and researching across the U.S. for the Boston Globe and the Washington Post, Haygood has seen the inner workings of diverse communities. Pulling from his experiences, Haygood concludes that we need to listen to each other’s anxieties to come together and move forward. He is an expert on the politics of race and class in ways that can both explain America’s current divides and give a hopeful solution for the future. As tensions worsen, ends of a spectrum divide and hate crimes rise, Haygood believes that although we are a community that has unraveled, we have the ability to knit ourselves back together.
Serving the Underserved: Why Thurgood Marshall's Model Works