The country was appalled by the black-and-white photos from Selma’s Bloody Sunday as they flashed across television screens.
Attempting to cross the Edmund Pettus Bridge, nonviolent marchers were brutally clubbed by Alabama state troopers. the terrified screams. the significant tear gas clouds. Sheriffs on horses were chasing terrified adults, children, and women back across the steel-arched building. repeatedly beating them with clubs, whips, and rubber tubes covered in barbed wire.
As the vice president at the time, Joe Biden stated in 2013 at a ceremony honoring the voting rights march, “we saw in plain relief the hatred, discrimination, and violence that remained in huge portions of the nation” on that horrifying day.
On Sunday, Vice President Joe Biden—currently the President—returns to Selma to commemorate the 58th anniversary of the march, which is today recognized as one of the pivotal episodes in the country’s civil rights movement. At the Edmund Pettus Bridge, he will make a speech and take part in a recreation of the bridge crossing.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said, “This is essential. According to Jean-Pierre, Biden wanted to be there at the memorial service because “it’s a part of our history that we really shouldn’t forget.”
Describe Bloody Sunday
Black People encountered obstacles to voting rights throughout much of the segregated south, therefore it started as a march for their rights. Leaders of the civil rights movement intended to march 54 miles from Selma to Montgomery, the state capital, to present their case directly to Alabama Governor George Wallace.
On March 7, 1965, about 600 marchers left the Brown Chapel AME Church, including future Georgia congressman John Lewis. State troopers were ready for the protesters when they crossed the Edmund Pettus Bridge across the Alabama River. Sheriff’s deputies and white spectators carrying Confederate flags were in the back of the procession. Law enforcement officials attacked the peaceful protestors after they defied their demands to disperse.
People were so incensed by the assault’s television coverage that Congress swiftly passed the Voting Rights Act of 1965, a historic statute that outlawed racial discrimination in elections, barely five months after it was broadcast.
Why are so many political personalities converging in Selma?
For presidents and other officials, attending the bridge’s centennial crossing has come to be seen as a milestone.
Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama have all made the journey there, joining contemporary civil rights campaigners as they followed the identical route across the bridge that those protesters took almost 60 years earlier. Last year, Kamala Harris, the first female vice president, led the parade.
Sunday’s visit by Biden will be his third appearance at the memorial service. He participated in the annual reenactment for the first time as vice president in 2013, and seven years later he did so again, this time running for president. He made his remarks at the city’s historic Brown Chapel AME Church only hours after his first primary victory in South Carolina was made possible by a large number of African votes there.
Biden issued warnings about the city’s long-ago-gained voting rights protections on both of his visits. His talk this year is probably going to focus on the same subject while also stressing the significance of economic justice and civil rights for Americans of color.
The danger to voting rights
Voting rights would be a primary focus for the Biden administration. Yet, as Republican-led states have sought to restrict voting rights and as bills to defend fought-for voting rights have languished in Congress, civil rights groups have grown angry.
Last month, a group of religious leaders wrote an open letter to Biden and Congressmen warning them that if they choose to attend Sunday’s commemoration in Selma, they should bring more than just empty words.
The letter argued that they ought to be accompanied by a pledge to strengthen the fight for living wages, expand voting rights, and boost financial support for rural communities.
The religious leaders declared that Selma was the holy land. “In a very genuine sense, it is the birthplace of the prospect of a true democracy. Politics should not be played here or pretended to be. You’re either serious or you’re not.
The annual commemoration in Selma, Alabama is an opportunity to reflect on the progress that has been made in the fight for civil rights and social justice, as well as the work that still needs to be done to achieve true equality and justice for all.
The event draws participants from across the United States and around the world, including civil rights leaders, activists, and community members, as well as politicians, celebrities, and other public figures.
In addition to the annual commemoration in Selma, other events and initiatives are held throughout the year to promote civil rights and social justice. These include voter registration drives, marches, rallies, and educational programs aimed at raising awareness about issues such as police brutality, systemic racism, and discrimination.
The legacy of the civil rights movement and the struggle for social justice continues to inspire new generations of activists and advocates, who are working to build a more just and equitable society. Through continued activism and engagement, it is hoped that the ideals of the civil rights movement will continue to guide us toward a brighter future for all.
The legacy of the civil rights movement is an important part of American history and culture. The movement, which fought for racial equality and social justice, has had a profound impact on American society, politics, and culture, and its influence continues to be felt today.
In addition to the annual commemoration of “Bloody Sunday” in Selma, there are many other events and initiatives that celebrate the legacy of the civil rights movement and promote social justice. For example, Black History Month, which is celebrated in February each year, provides an opportunity to honor the achievements and contributions of African Americans throughout history, including civil rights leaders such as Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks.
Other initiatives include efforts to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion in schools, workplaces, and other settings, as well as programs aimed at addressing systemic inequalities in areas such as housing, healthcare, and criminal justice.
While progress has been made in the fight for civil rights and social justice, there is still much work to be done to address ongoing issues such as police brutality, racial profiling, and discrimination. Through continued activism, education, and engagement, it is hoped that the ideals of the civil rights movement will continue to inspire progress and positive change in the years to come.