Benjamin Hooks biography

Benjamin Hooks

Minister of religion, Military Person

1925 – 2010


Who was Benjamin Hooks?

Benjamin Lawson Hooks was an American civil rights leader. A Baptist minister and practicing attorney, he served as executive director of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People from 1977 to 1992, and throughout his career was a vocal campaigner for civil rights in the United States.

Famous Quotes:

  • I wish I could tell you every time I was on the highway and couldn’t use a restroom, my bladder is messed up because of that. Stomach is messed up from eating cold sandwiches.
  • At that time you were insulted by law clerks, excluded from white bar associations and when I was in court, I was lucky to be called Ben, usually it was just ‘boy.’ [But] the judges were always fair. The discrimination of those days has changed and, today, the South is ahead of the North in many respects in civil rights progress.
  • Black Americans are not defeated, the civil rights movement is not dead. If anyone thinks that we are going to stop agitating, they had better think again. If anyone thinks that we are going to stop litigating, they had better close the courts. If anyone thinks that we are not going to demonstrate and protest, they had better roll up the sidewalks.
  • There are a lot of ways an oppressed people can rise. One way to rise is to study, to be smarter than your oppressor. The concept of rising against oppression through physical contact is stupid and self-defeating. It exalts brawn over brain. And the most enduring contributions made to civilization have not been made by brawn, they have been made by brain.
  • We’ve been through some little stormy periods before. I think we’ll overcome it.


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"Benjamin Hooks." STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 12 Jun 2021. <>.

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Jan 31, 1925
Also known as
  • Benjamin Lawson Hooks
  • Dr. Benjamin Hooks
  • Rev. Benjamin L. Hooks
  • United States of America
  • Howard University
    (1943 - 1944)
  • LeMoyne-Owen College
    (1941 - 1943)
  • Juris Doctor, DePaul University College of Law
    ( - 1948)
Apr 15, 2010

on July 23, 2013

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