Streep, Wonder, Brokaw to receive Presidential Medals of Freedom

President Obama has announced 19 new recipients of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, to be honored for their contributions to American culture, peace, and security.

Nick Ut
Meryl Streep, who will be awarded a Presidential Medal of Freedom for her contribution to American culture, attended a "Hollywood Costume" exhibition at the historic Wilshire May Company Building in Los Angeles, on Monday, Sept. 29.

Meryl Streep, Stevie Wonder and Tom Brokaw are among the latest Americans tapped to receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom, President Barack Obama has announced.

The performers and former NBC anchor will join 16 others at the White House on Nov. 24 for a ceremony marking their achievements. The medal is the highest honor granted to civilians in the U.S. and honors contributions to U.S. security, world peace and cultural achievement.

"From scientists who kept America on the cutting edge to public servants who help write new chapters in our American story, these citizens have made extraordinary contributions to our country and the world," Obama said in a statement from Beijing, where the president was traveling for an economic summit.

Musical theater composer Stephen Sondheim and actress Marlo Thomas will also receive the award. Choreographer Alvin Ailey, who died in 1989, will receive the medal posthumously. So will former Rep. Edward Roybal of California, who founded the Congressional Hispanic Caucus.

Those being honored include slain civil rights activists James Chaney, Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner, who were killed during their work in an historic voter registration effort in Mississippi in 1964.

Rep. John Dingell of Michigan, the longest-serving congressman in American history, will receive the award, as will Ethel Kennedy, the widow of former Sen. Robert Kennedy. Native American activist Suzan Harjo and former Reps. Abner Mikva of Illinois and Patsy Takemoto Mink of Hawaii are also on the list.

Other recipients include author Isabel Allende, scientist Mildred Dresselhaus, golfer Charles Sifford and economist Robert Solow.

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to CSMonitor.com.

QR Code to Streep, Wonder, Brokaw to receive Presidential Medals of Freedom
Read this article in
https://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Latest-News-Wires/2014/1110/Streep-Wonder-Brokaw-to-receive-Presidential-Medals-of-Freedom
QR Code to Subscription page
Start your subscription today
https://www.csmonitor.com/subscribe