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Wed, 01 Nov 2017 05:00:24 GMT

Heading into Selma, looking out my window on bus #6, "Southern Comfort," struck by the beauty and the power of our 6-bus caravan that always traveled in formation. It was a formidable sight. My thoughts went to the Freedom Riders of the 1960s, and it hit me, hard, that we were a kind of modern day freedom riders. I heard police sirens, and watched police motorcycles speed past. Fleetingly, still in my reverie about the 1960s, I wondered if the police were after us, if we were in danger. (After all, they not only brutalized the Freedom Riders of the 60s, but colluded with the Ku Klux Klan in doing so. And to be honest, I was a little scared of the South....) A competing thought was that they were racing to an accident up ahead. And then I learned that they were our escorts in to Selma. They were there to protect ... us?! I totally lost it. I started sobbing, wishing the Freedom Riders of the the 1960s had had police protection too, instead of police brutality. I looked over and 2 of my choir sisters were also crying. Selma's history was palpable. And the magni tude of what we were doing together, in the South, in SELMA of all places, today, converged with this profound grief for all those whose blood was spilled in the civil rights movement of the past, a deep, deep gratitude and indebtedness to them for providing the shoulders on which we could stand, awe in their courage, and feeling immeasurably honored to be walking in their footsteps, and in our own small way, tied to their legacy of justice, equality , unity, and healing.