Daryl Davis is an award-winning musician, a renowned activist and race relations expert, actor, lecturer and author. He is the leader of The Daryl Davis Band and has played with many acclaimed musicians including Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee Lewis and B. B. King. Often called The Rock'n'Roll Race Reconciliator, for the past 40 years, Daryl has spent time befriending members of the Ku Klux Klan, has convinced many of them to deradicalize, and have been directly or indirectly responsible for over 200 members leaving the Klan. He is the first Black author to write a book on the Ku Klux Klan, Klan-Destine Relationships, by conducting in-person interviews with them. Daryl has received numerous awards including the Elliott-Black Award, the Bridge Builder Award and the MLK Award; has acted on stage, film and television, including HBO's television series The Wire, and is the subject of the award-winning documentary Accidental Courtesy detailing his real life encounters with the Ku Klux Klan.
How do we build bridges with our fiercest adversaries—those that it would seem impossible for us to sit down and have a conversation with—change their hearts and minds, and turn them into lifelong friends? What causes some people to develop radically racist beliefs, behaviors and attitudes, and how can we, in our current capacities, seek to inspire and transform them? What kind of discipline do we need to build to successfully lead sustained, positive reform in our communities?
This episode offers key insights on: