spent the better part of today standing in a crowd facing the Monroe school in Topeka, where it was being dedicated as a national historic site. fifty years ago today, the supreme court unanimously decided that it was unamerican and against our nation's constitition to allow segragation in the public schools to continue (legally, at least) in response to several lawsuits filed by families including little seven year old carol brown's father. she was there today to speak (and to introduce the president), along with many other dignitaries and civil rights leaders including the rev. jesse jackson and the rev. fred shuttlesworth, who i could've listened to for another hour at least, with his biblical refrences to the cause of civil rights and his sharply honed wit.
i felt a responsibility to be there, to show support of a cause i firmly believe in. all my life i have been angered by predjudice, injustice, people looking down their noses at other people just because they looked different, were of a different race - just because of the color of their skin. and not only looking down their noses - we cannot forget ugly scars on america's historical landscape like the kkk, lynching, unfair trials, slavery, the list goes on. today i heard about children - children! who chose courage over fear and walked through lines of discrimination, endured ridicule, beatings, poor conditions, unfair accusations - in the name of trying to get an education.
i believe that God is sympathetic to the poor, the downtrodden, the shunned, the humiliated. i believe that he put that fire in me, to some degree..and i was glad to have the opportunity to be among many, many like minded people today.