Monday, March 29, 2010
So the blog wouldn't let me blog for the first few days so I'll condense. First day definitely did not go quite according to plan, but yet was really great. Dr. Robert Baker(A professor at Georgia State University) is amazing. I loved his speech. He brought us from the 17th century to the 20th century. He even brought in the story of Joshua Glover, a resident of Racine, who was accused of being a run away slave and was brought to jail in Milwaukee and then was broken out by others who knew his innocence. Needless to say, it was a great story, he's even written a book about it. He then talked to us about Ida B. Wells and how she had been forced north for over 20 years for the publications she was producing. He went from that to talk about the segregation in schools and about the little rock 9. He was amazing!
So then the next day we went to the MLK sites and Ebenezer baptist church. The service was amazing. The choir was unbelievable once again. In his sermon he discussed why were at the service? Did we want to be there to see jesus? Or did we just want to be seen? He also asked why we are friends with some of the people that we are? Why do we let the people that use us do so? So I think that hit home for a lot of people. We then hit the road to Birmingham.
We went to the Birmingham civil rights institute was amazing as usual, I love it. There is so much information I feel like I could go 20 times and find something new. The displays they have are so nice since they are very realistic, like the black classroom vs the white classroom. Also I like to see the case files and if they convicted people for the bombing of 16th St baptist church. I then wandered to 16th st baptist church. A man was outside talking to some of the other students. It was nice to hear his input about what had gone on back then, however he lost some respect from me when he then panhandled the girls he was talking to. The walk through Kelly Ingram park was great, there was a student who wasn't sure what everything meant so I tried to explain it as we went which I think helped make it more meaningful for us both. We then talked to Dr Pamela King at the University of Alabama Birmingham. She is always interesting to talk to because she has a very interesting perspective compared to other people we have met. She is a middle class white professor who considers herself as much of a product of the movement as anyone else. However this seemed to cause some confusion with some of the other students. She had told us this story on the last trip but had expanded more on it. This time she only told them that her parents were activists, but never really got too far into that. On the last trip she had explained that her parents let people stay in their home when they were in town for marches and such. So I think that little bit would have cleared some stuff up for people. But I like her and think she is a great speaker for this trip. We went to golden corral for dinner, delicious!
Montgomery(Today)! So we headed up the first confederate white house first thing in the morning. It was where Jefferson Davis had his brief reign over the confederacy. We then headed to the state capitol. I always love it because the tour guides are pretty interesting. We have been told more than once now that slavery only lasted for 20 years. And this time were told that it was an economic necessity, economics or not I still think it's wrong. We then headed to the Civil rights memorial. It's one of my favorite stops, it has the Martyrs of the Civil Rights Movement. I have actually made my own version and have it put up in my wing at school. I think it is a very inspiring stop seeing that people are to this day being victim to hate crimes. Also I find it a great opportunity to sign the wall of tolerance. It helps us all take responsibility for our actions. We then hit the Rosa Parks museum I love the simulation of the day she was arrested. It helps make it all more real and our tour guide was very informative, I just wish we would have split into two groups. We then did a walking tour of Montgomery which each one was unique. My group a lady stopped us at one point to tell us we were heading towards a bad area so we avoided it. Dreamland BBQ was so much fun for dinner. We had our own personal dancing waiter and Beth's tea was the worst thing ever and looked like soup. The banana pudding there is sooooooo good. Welp, tomorrow is Selma and it will be an amazing day :)