John Conyers Champion of Arab, Muslim rights dies
By Ray Hanania
John Conyers, the former Michigan Congressman who founded the Black caucus and was a clarion voice in defense of Arab and Muslim civil rights, died Sunday, Oct. 27, 2019.
John Conyers was a member of the U.S. Congress from Michigan. He was born in Detroit, Wayne County, Mich., May 16, 1929 and attended Detroit public schools. He received his B.A. from Wayne State University, Detroit, Mich., 1957; LL.B., Wayne State Law School, Detroit, Mich., 1958; lawyer, private practice; Michigan National Guard, 1948-1950.
Conyers served in the United States Army from 1950-1954 and the United States Army Reserve from 1954-1957. He was a staff member for U.S. Representative John D. Dingell, Jr., of Michigan from 1958-1961, and served as the general counsel for three labor locals in Detroit, 1959-1964.
He was an executive board member, Detroit, Mich., American Civil Liberties Union, 1964 to present; executive board member, Detroit, Mich., NAACP, 1963 to present; referee for Michigan workmen’s compensation department, 1961-1963.
Conyers was elected as a Democrat to the 89th Congress and to 26 succeeding Congresses until his resignation on December 5, 2017 (January 3, 1965-December 5, 2017).
Conyers was one of the managers appointed by the House of Representatives in 1988 to conduct the impeachment proceedings against Alcee Lamar Hastings, judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida; chairman, Committee on Government Operations (One Hundred First through One Hundred Third Congresses); chairman, Committee on the Judiciary (One Hundred Tenth and One Hundred Eleventh Congresses).
Democratic Congresswoman Debbie Dingell of Michigan’s 12th District released the following statement on the passing of former Congressman John Conyers.
“John Conyers was a civil rights champion who served Michigan and the people of Detroit for decades. He began his career working for John Dingell, before running for Congress himself and they both believed in justice and equality for all. John Conyers spent his life championing those causes. The fights John Conyers fought will be remembered for generations. I am deeply saddened by his passing. May God bring his family comfort during this difficult time.”
Dingell is the widow of another Congressional champion of Arab ands Muslim rights, former Congressman John Dingell who died this past February 7, 2019.
Ray Hanania is an award winning political and humor columnist who analyzes American and Middle East politics, and life in general. He is an author of several books.
Hanania covered Chicago Politics and Chicago City Hall from 1976 through 1992. He began writing in 1975 publishing The Middle Eastern Voice newspaper in Chicago (1975-1977). He later published “The National Arab American Times” newspaper (2004-2007).
Hanania writes weekly columns on Middle East and American Arab issues as Special US Correspondent for the Arab News ArabNews.com, at TheArabDailyNews.com, and at SuburbanChicagoland.com. He has published weekly columns in the Jerusalem Post newspaper, YNetNews.com, Newsday, the Orlando Sentinel, Houston Chronical, and Arlington Heights Daily Herald.
Hanania is the recipient of four (4) Chicago Headline Club “Peter Lisagor Awards” for Column writing. In November 2006, he was named “Best Ethnic American Columnist” by the New American Media. In 2009, Hanania received the prestigious Sigma Delta Chi Award for Writing from the Society of Professional Journalists. He is the recipient of the MT Mehdi Courage in Journalism Award. He was honored for his writing skills with two (2) Chicago Stick-o-Type awards from the Chicago Newspaper Guild. In 1990, Hanania was nominated by the Chicago Sun-Times editors for a Pulitzer Prize for his four-part series on the Palestinian Intifada.
His writings have also been honored by two national Awards from ADC for his writing, and from the National Arab American Journalists Association.
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