Black-Jewish alliance

Gene Wilder, In Black And White

In ‘Blazing Saddles,’ the comic actor helped recall a fading black-Jewish alliance.

08/30/2016 - 12:48

Last year I joined some 3,000 people at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark for a wide-screen showing of Mel Brooks’ 1974 Western parody “Blazing Saddles.” In the onstage interview that followed, Brooks, then 89, was beside himself in his delight at sharing his 42-year-old comedy with a real live audience.

Gene Wilder, right, in a scene with Cleavon Little from the 1974 comedy “Blazing Saddles.” Warner Bros./Courtesy of Getty Images

Freedom Summer Memories

Black-Jewish alliance was brief, beautiful.

07/15/2014 - 20:00
Associate Editor

The naked light bulb was more harsh than bright. It was 3 a.m. on a sleepless, sweltering Florida night, June 19, 1964, in the St. Augustine jail. In a cell with two bunks were 17 Northern Jews, imprisoned for civil rights activities down South. Just 48 hours earlier they were relaxing at a convention for Reform rabbis in an Atlantic City hotel.

Martyrs of the movement: James Chaney, Andrew Goodman, and Michael Schwerner. Wikimedia Commons
Syndicate content