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View Diary: My family's experiences with Martin Luther King at the Selma Civil Rights March (29 comments)

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  •  I joined the march outside of Montgomery (20+ / 0-)

    I, and four others, flew to Montgomery from Bard College in New York.  We spent the night before the last day of the march, outside n the rain, in a field smelling of crushed onions.  i remember most the songs -- wonderful rhythmic songs speaking of fighting for freedom and for what was right.  I remember the incredible sense of friendship and fellowship.  

    The next day, marching from the grounds of St. Jude to the center of Montgomery, I remember again the songs but I also remember seeing obscene gestures from men standing along side the road we marched.  An eighteen year old girl at the time, I was an innocent shocked by the primitive behavior and the language of that crowd.  Nevertheless, I was proud to be there, joining in the songs, holding hands with fellow marchers, standing up for all Americans that day and our right to Democracy. I was aware that we might not be safe but I had chosen to add my body to those telling Congress to act to make sure every American had the right to vote.

    That march changed me and changed my life.  i realized that we had a choice to live in fellowship or in antagonism.  I felt just how powerful and wonderful a choice of fellowship could be.

    As I watched efforts to infringe on people's right to vote this past election, I realized that the efforts we made in that march need renewing.  

    When I heard President Obama today say that no one should have to stand in line over two hours to cast their vote in an election, I knew the message was still alive.  My heart rejoiced.

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