Keeta King Visits Selma, Walks Across Edmund Pettus [VIDEO]
This time last Friday, I was burning the highway up headed to Dothan, Alabama with my son and his girlfriend to play in the Dixie Majors World Series. On our journey home, we stopped in Selma. When we drove in Friday night., we came through Selma. We stopped, got gas, grabbed snacks and continued our journey to Dothan. Within those few moments, an indescribable feeling came over me.... too heavy to ignore. The best way I knew to explain it to my passengers was, "There's such a heavy spirit in this city, and I'm not sure what it is... but I feel it very strongly.' I knew that night I had to have a date with Selma Sunday afternoon before we went home.
Sunday came and so did my date with Selma. Of course it was Sunday, and mostly everything was closed. But just before we reached the infamous Edmund Pettus Bridge, a somewhat tattered little shopping strip caught my eye and I saw a sign that said, 'Selma's Voting Rights Monument and Park'.
The kids and I stopped not really knowing what we were gonna find. It didn't take us long to find out, however. One of the very first things that snatched our attention was a small burial ground with two tombs. One of an unknown black soldier. The other of an unknown slave. A few rocks and a tombstone made of wood was all that marked their particular location of rest. We took a minute, and we moved on.
That indescribable spirit was there.......
Just a few steps over were tribute stones of four forerunners in the fight for our right to vote. Does the term "Bloody Sunday" ring a bell?
"Bloody Sunday" March 7, 1965
MOTHERS OF THE CIVIIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT BEFORE AND BEYOND THE BRIDGE.
DIDN'T LET NOTHING TURN THEM AROUND
Words written on the tribute stones of Amelia Boyton Robinson and Marie Foster, voter's rights champions! As I'm reading... My eyes begin to water. Because...I think about the FIGHT it took to walk across that Edmund Pettus Bridge... KNOWING just on the other side there was an angry mob of racists just waiting on you to cross. No protection, at that time from local, state, nor federal government. On this Sunday I was standing in front of the stone monuments of 4 black warriors who were among thousands on that Bloody Sunday to have bones crushed by billy clubs... to get choked by tear gas... to be trampled. And when they knelt to pray many were struck in the head including the late John Lewis. JUST so you and I can enjoy the same rights to vote as any other non-black US citizen... Keep in mind this was state-sponsored violence. It was at that point I knew I had to share the experience with my social media friends. See live Facebook video below:
If you ever need a reminder of the oppression of the south during Jim Crow and the civil rights movement, visit Selma. Hear me and hear me well, friends.... If you've never known the importance of your right to vote, you need to see how "Bloody Sunday" went down for your right to have a say-so in the outcome of a system a to govern the lives of black people as well. Check out the video below showing the demonstration done on that bloody Sunday.
I could never really express in words that heavy feeling in Selma. However, I would relive time and time again just to experience the heart and spirit of fighters... freedom fighters... tired fighters who now rest in heaven looking down... proud of where we've come from, yet seeing how far....we have to go. In the words of Nipsey Hussle.. "The marathon continues!" How dare you not continue to march, protest, speak out, make noise, etc for justice and equality! How DARE you not vote, when folks had their skulls cracked so you could!
It is my hope along with the majority of Selma citizens and the population of the world who know just how pain and blood lies across that bridge that it will be renamed after civil rights warrior, John Lewis who almost lost his life on that very bridge. May he rest in peace. Check out photos from our experience below...