Silent march to spotlight threats to voting rights
A number of local organizations are marking the anniversary of Bloody Sunday next month with a silent march.
On Sunday, March 7, 1965, more than 500 peaceful marchers, led by John Lewis (now a U.S. Congressman) of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee SNCC, left Selma, Ala. for Montgomery, Ala. They were protesting the denial of their right to vote and the brutal murder by police of Jimmie Lee Jackson at an earlier voting rights rally. As they reached the Edmund Pettus Bridge, they were viciously attacked by Alabama state troopers with clubs and tear gas.
The events of “Bloody Sunday,” as the day became known, were broadcast around the world, revealing the courage of non-violent freedom fighters in the face of hate and violence. As a result, President Lyndon Johnson used his clout to push through the landmark Voting Rights Act of 1965.
On Sunday, April 7 at 1:30 p.m., Emmanuel Baptist Church Social Action Ministry, Winston-Salem Urban League, Democracy North Carolina, NAACP, Ministers Conference of Winston-Salem and Vicinity and the Black Leadership Roundtable are urging local residents to continue the fight to protect voting rights by taking part in a silent march from the Forsyth County Board of Elections office, 201 N. Chestnut St., to the sit-in historical marker in front of the One West Fourth Street Building. There, marchers will be brought up to snuff on legislative issues and the threat that now looms over voting rights, including a legal challenge to the Voting Rights Act and a forthcoming voter ID law in North Carolina.
For more information, contact Patricia Sadler at 725-5614 or Linda Sutton at 870-2168.