James Earl Jones, the man behind "Darth Vader," will help unveil an exhibit featuring the Magna Carta at the National Constitution Center this week. The Magna Carta has been a symbol of liberty since its inception in 1215. It laid the groundwork for many of the ideas contained in the Constitution and Declaration of Independence. Educators, parents and caregivers looking for engaging ways to bring the history of the Magna Carta to life can find several at a special Magna Carta section at Thinkfinity.org (LINK) an education portal.
Jones sat down with 'This Week' to talk about the event and the link between literacy, education and liberty.
James Earl Jones: My great-great-grandmother taught my great-great-grandfather how to read at the peril of their lives. They could have been killed for that.
Why? Because if a person reads, of course, you will find out that the wrong things being done to you are wrong, that slavery is wrong. You will read opinions. There will be an exchange of ideas, and to maintain slavery you can't have an exchange of ideas. To maintain any sort of restrictive system, you cannot have an exchange of ideas.
We're going to have an event celebrating Fourth of July coming up in Philadelphia, and I will get to read the Declaration of Independence. ... Here's an opportunity to focus on the declaration itself -- besides the holiday, beside the great explosions and bombs bursting in air.