I was among the 200 people honored to retrace the first 12 miles of the Selma to Montgomery march Sunday and yesterday. My feet are tired but boy is my soul refreshed from the day’s march and what I experienced. I can’t help but feel a huge debt of gratitude for the brave men and women who embarked on that first march 47 years ago as they fought for civil rights.
As I walked yesterday, I reflected on a monument to a fallen civil rights leader in Selma that read “We pray with our feet.” During my march, we also prayed with laughter, with song, with chants and with conversations as we got to know our fellow marchers.
The march has brought together civil rights, immigration rights, labor groups and clergy members. We remembered the struggle of the past, but we also are marching to keep history from repeating itself in the form of the state’s harsh anti-immigration laws.
Every day of the march has a theme, and yesterday’s was education and voter rights. I was heartened to see young kids carrying signs that read “My Vote, Our Rights, Our Fight” to protest the state’s voter ID law.
Yesterday’s march ended with a church service at Tabernacle Baptist Church in Selma. The pulpit was filled with prominent civil rights and labor leaders but also young people who will carry the banner and the responsibility of making sure Alabama, and every state in this country, is free of laws that racially discriminate.
I can’t wait to see what today’s march brings. You can follow the march on Twitter (#Selma2012, #crisisAL) and track our coverage as well at twitter.com/communitychange