Courageous Love: Lynne Jackson
We are giving the Award to Lynne Jackson who has been an activist in Albany for over 30 years. She was a co-founder of Save the Pine Bush 33 years ago. They have been credited with saving over 3,000 acres. Without Save the Pine Bush this area would have been lost to development because of its prime location. She continues to advocate based on Save the Pine Bush’s slogan – “Fight City Hall – and win. ”
Today we are focusing on another group she co-founded Project SALAM – Support and Legal Advocacy for Muslims. FUUSA is giving away the plate today to support their efforts. She is receiving the Love award because of her compassion and concern when confronted with intolerance and injustice toward Muslims. In 2006 she heard about the cases in Albany of Yassin Arefs and Mohammed Hossain who were framed in an FBI “sting” operation. She began writing letters to Yassin and worked with the Muslim Solidarity Committee of Albany to support his family. From this work at the “Social Service” level, as Dick Gilbert defines it, she realized that there was a systemic national problem of pre-emptive prosecutions of Muslims. Based on this realization, she co-founded Project SALAM which provides public witness, community organizing, and works for systemic change. We present the award to her today because she exemplifies Standing on the Side of Love.
As our communities are threatened by the increased prevalence of acts motivated by fear and hate she sees hope and possibility.
She knows that no one should be dehumanized through acts of exclusion, oppression, or violence because of their identities.
In public debates over religious profiling and unjust prosecutions, she stands on the side of love and calls for respect, inclusion, and compassion.
Lifted up by: Chuck Manning