52 Facts About Al Sharpton


Al Sharpton preached his first sermon at the age of four and toured with gospel singer Mahalia Jackson.

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In 1963, Al Sharpton's father left his wife to have a relationship with Al Sharpton's half-sister.

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In 1969, Al Sharpton was appointed by Jesse Jackson to serve as youth director of the New York City branch of Operation Breadbasket, a group that focused on the promotion of new and better jobs for African Americans.

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In 1971, Al Sharpton founded the National Youth Movement to raise resources for impoverished youth.

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Al Sharpton threatened that Hawkins's three companions would not cooperate with prosecutor Elizabeth Holtzman unless her office agreed to hire more black attorneys.

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Al Sharpton recovered from his wounds, and later asked the judge for leniency when Riccardi was sentenced.

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In 1991, Al Sharpton founded the National Action Network, an organization designed to increase voter education, to provide services to those in poverty, and to support small community businesses.

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Al Sharpton recalled receiving a call from Coretta Scott King at the time, during which she told him "sometimes you are tempted to speak to the applause of the crowd rather than the heights of the cause, and you will say cheap things to get cheap applause rather than do high things to raise the nation higher".

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Al Sharpton claimed that the perpetrator was an open critic of himself and his nonviolent tactics.

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In 2002, Al Sharpton expressed regret for making the racial remark "white interloper" but denied responsibility for inflaming or provoking the violence.

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In 1999, Al Sharpton led a protest to raise awareness about the death of Amadou Diallo, an immigrant from Guinea who was shot dead by NYPD officers.

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Al Sharpton claimed that Diallo's death was the result of police brutality and racial profiling.

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Al Sharpton was arrested for his participation and leadership in these protests.

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Al Sharpton referred to the special prosecutor, attorney general Bob Abrams, as "Mr Hitler".

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In 2001, Sharpton was jailed for 90 days on trespassing charges while protesting against U S military target practice exercises in Puerto Rico near a United States Navy bombing site.

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In 2002, Al Sharpton was involved in protests following the death of West African immigrant Ousmane Zongo.

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Al Sharpton met with the family and provided some legal services.

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At his press conference Al Sharpton said that any violent act toward a woman is inexcusable but he felt that the accused youths were being treated unfairly because they were black.

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In June 2011, Al Sharpton spoke at a rally in support of Tanya McDowell, who was arrested and charged with larceny for allegedly registering her son for kindergarten in the wrong public school district using a false address.

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Al Sharpton's claimed to spend time in both a Bridgeport, Connecticut, apartment and a homeless shelter in Norwalk, where her son was registered.

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MSNBC issued a statement in which they said Al Sharpton "repeatedly called for calm" and further investigation.

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In September 2007, Al Sharpton was asked whether he considered it important for the US to have a black president.

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Al Sharpton has spoken out against cruelty to animals in a video recorded for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.

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Al Sharpton is a supporter of equal rights for gays and lesbians and same-sex marriage.

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In 2014, Al Sharpton began a push for criminal justice reform, citing the fact that black people represent a greater proportion of those arrested and incarcerated in America.

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Al Sharpton said taxpayer funds should not be used to care for monuments to slave-owners and that private museums were preferable.

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Al Sharpton is an opponent of the Defund the Police movement, charging that the idea is being pushed by "latte liberals" who were out of touch with the African-American community, and that black and poor neighbourhoods "need proper policing" to protect the inhabitants from higher crime rates.

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Al Sharpton's critics describe him as "a political radical who is to blame, in part, for the deterioration of race relations".

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Al Sharpton sees much of the criticism as a sign of his effectiveness.

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In 2021, Al Sharpton was criticized for leading a tobacco industry pushback against a proposed ban on the sale of menthol cigarettes using "cynically manipulative" arguments while his National Action Network accepted funding from tobacco companies.

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Later that month, Sharpton went to Salt Lake City, Utah, where he met with Elder M Russell Ballard, a leader of the Church, and Elder Robert C Oaks of the Church's Presidency of the Seventy.

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Al Sharpton refused to pay his share of the damages; it was later paid by a number of black business leaders including Johnnie Cochran.

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Al Sharpton said in 2007 that if he had it to do over again, he might have not attacked Pagones personally, but would otherwise have handled the Brawley case the same way.

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Al Sharpton said in 1988 that he informed for the government in order to stem the flow of crack cocaine into black neighborhoods.

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Al Sharpton allegedly recorded incriminating conversations with Genovese and Gambino family mobsters, contributing to the indictments of several underworld figures.

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Al Sharpton was paid to be an informant, he carried a briefcase with a recording device in it, and he made surreptitious tape recordings of a Gambino crime family member 10 separate times as an informant.

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Al Sharpton did it at the direction of the FBI, he was prepped by the FBI, was handed the briefcase by the FBI and was debriefed after the meetings.

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Al Sharpton is alleged to have secretly recorded conversations with black activists in the 1980s regarding Joanne Chesimard and other underground black militants.

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In 2005, Al Sharpton appeared in three television commercials for LoanMax, an automobile title loan company.

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In 1993, Al Sharpton pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor for failing to file a state income tax return.

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Al Sharpton countered the investigative actions with a charge that they reflected a political agenda by United States agencies.

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Al Sharpton is an honorary member of Phi Beta Sigma fraternity.

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Al Sharpton was re-baptized as a member of the Bethany Baptist Church in 1994 by the Reverend William Augustus Jones and became a Baptist minister.

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In February 2007, genealogist Megan Smolenyak discovered that Al Sharpton's great-grandfather, Coleman Al Sharpton, was a slave owned by Julia Thurmond, whose grandfather was Strom Thurmond's great-great-grandfather.

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Al Sharpton has run unsuccessfully for elected office on multiple occasions.

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The repayment was required because Al Sharpton had exceeded federal limits on personal expenditures for his campaign.

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Al Sharpton said in 2007 that he would not enter the 2008 presidential race.

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Al Sharpton hosted the original Spike TV reality television show I Hate My Job, and an episode of Saturday Night Live.

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Al Sharpton was a guest on Weekends at the DL on Comedy Central and has been featured in television ads for the Fernando Ferrer campaign for the New York City mayoral election, 2005.

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In 1999, Al Sharpton appeared in a documentary about black nationalism hosted by Louis Theroux, as part of the 'Weird Weekends' series.

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In June 2005, Al Sharpton signed a contract with Matrix Media to produce and host a live two-hour daily talk program, but it never aired.

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Al Sharpton continues to be a regular contributor to Morning Joe.

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