Dew Does Civil Rights

Allie Harrill, Editor in Chief

On the 24 of January, Jeremiah Dew, a local actor paid a visit to Christ Church in honor of Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday. Over the course of a fourty-five minute period, he performed a one-man show that recounted stories of black history that dated all the way back to the nineteenth century.

According to, Dew is a graduate of Bob Jones University and received a degree in Mass Media and a minor in Broadcast Journalism. For many, Dew’s performance in the auditorium was not the first time they had seen his face.  He is the director of fun for the minor league team, The Greenville Drive, and emcee for the men’s basketball team at Clemson University.  In addition, he also owns Gamemaster Entertainment located in Greenville.

During Dew’s performance, he reenacted some of the most pivotal black figures in the history of the United States.  To start things off, he gave a moving speech as Frederick Douglass.  As Douglass, he brought to the forefront the terrors black slaves had to face long ago.  Watching his use of vivid language and gestures, the audience could not help but feel they were listening to the real Frederick Douglass himself.

Next, Dew took on the part of Martin Luther King Jr.  Standing behind the podium, he recited parts of King’s famous March on Washington Speech.  Not only did he emphasize the fervor King felt towards the issue of treating blacks as equals through his body language, he also raised his voice and rolled his words similar to the way King did to show true passion.  He played the part well, giving meaning to King’s words even beyond his passing.

Following that performance, a short clip of video flashed across the screen.  The video began to play and words slowly appeared mentioning, “The Greenville Eight.”  The Greenville Eight was a group of black students who had the courage to march into the white-only library in order to get books they could not access in the black library.  Margaree Crosby, a member of the group gave an account of what happened on that historical day in the 1960’s.  The 1960’s were times of tension and inequality for minorities.  Crosby went into detail on the day’s events and how the head of the “white library” and law enforcement treated them.

Dew then took to the stage not as a political figure, but as a comedian: Bill Cosby.  Sporting a classic Cosby sweater, he performed many comical situations and jokes.  Through this reenactment, he was able to convey that one does not have to be a political figure to make a significant impact.

Changing attire for the last time, Dew fastened on the iconic blue tie as President Barack Obama.  As Obama, he emphasized the “yes, we can” phrase so popularized by the President himself.  The fact that people can make a change no matter their race, gender, or other differences was honed in on and stressed.

When asked about the content of the show, Dew commented “It really tells a story of black people in their entirety over the course of a long period, especially in Greenville.”