December 8, 2019

The Final Act

Dear John Lewis,

       I think the way you refer to the cause of C.T Vivian’s arrest, as well as those who were trying to register with him, as ‘good/ necessary trouble,’ is very effective. It shows that what African Americans fought for back then, was for a just cause and it changes the way I saw the term trouble because it’s usually associated with something negative. Going back to what happens in the story, the march event had already began to take place. Many state reinforcements attempted to stop the march, which resulted in the threat to use violence in order to break away the crowd. Malcom X’s death was announced on the radio days later. I could never even come close to imagining anything tragic as a death of an acquaintance on the day of my birthday. I could see the shock, even after everyone found out Jimmie Lee Jackson was dead as well. The plan for another march was devised from Selma to Montgomery but SNCC believed it wouldn’t do much for them as it would for Martin L. King, but just like you, I thought the opposite. I don’t know what makes this march different from any action that they’ve taken to fight for their rights to vote, as all of them came with that risk factor of confronting violence, but you saw this as reason to speak for yourself and follow what you believed. There is then, a sudden transition to when you met Barack Obama, in which he gave you a card with words of appreciation written on it. I feel like it was, although a weird transition, effective because it’s like you’re looking back on the choices you’ve made to get to where the present has taken us. In the end, the voting act was finally signed despite the pain and shots that were fired many.

                                                                                       Sincerely,

                                                                                               Shela

            

November 4, 2019

A Turn for the Better

Dear John Lewis,

        The amount of funerals I’ve been to in my lifetime, must be nothing compared to the amount funerals one attended back then. As the fight for equality continues, your third book, March, begins giving insight on what’s going on behind the scenes in the White House, starting with the president then, Lyndon B. Johnson. Testimonies from delegates were held and recorded on national television as Mrs. Fannie Lou Hamer’s who spoke out on the consequences she received for voting, as well as many other people including Martin Luther King Jr. President Johnson soon found a way to interrupt their testimonies by holding a press conference, but it failed because the testimonies were aired again later that evening. The extreme measures to prevent the Credential Committee from voting in attempt to influence the results of the poll led African Americans stuck on the decision of choosing two delegates. The Democratic Convention was stated as the turning point in the movement because Johnson won for re-election, in the end. Since then, there was a long period of mistrust in the government and the faltering hope that grew to break organizations like the SNCC. Traveling to Africa was able to open up a different experience for you and others during this tough time in which you got to witness a colored person take position as the pilot, as well as the the meetup with Malcom X who wanted to broaden the situation to the United Nations. There were questions revolving around the rise of equality for women that led to further complications in the SNCC. These things eventually led up to the huge event of Dr. Kings March to freedom.

        I felt like everything that’s happened up to this point has definitely taken a serious turn for the better. Even though there is a bit of hope that was crushed at one point, the community nevertheless got together to unite and start this powerful act of marching.

                                                                Sincerely,

                                                                                   Shela

October 10, 2019

Growing Hope

 

Dear John Lewis,

       To continue where the story left off last time, the struggle against racial discrimination occurs yet again. Even if African Americans were given the ability to vote, there was this constant difficulty that others created in order to try and prevent the act of registering. As a response, protest groups started growing in large numbers just as amount of people arrested did too. Mock elections, known as the Freedom Vote, were then held to recreate and give a sense of reality of how it would feel like if African Americans were actually given the chance to vote. The announcement of President Kennedy’s assassination happened not too long afterwards, which shook the whole community because he represented the hope for change and route to equality. Lyndon B. Johnson was next for presidency and was able to pass the civil rights bill but didn’t seem to be fully committed to that idea. Cooperating with the white students and making full use of their publicity to channel messages of civil rights to the president became the main goal of SNCC. Freedom Summer marked the initial attempt to educate volunteers to the issue and rise for the cause, in which President Johnson later on passed the Civil Rights Act to end discrimination and segregation. 

       I feel that through all the events, it is empowering to be able to rise to the occasion and begin working with people who’s race has greatly despised another’s race. Again, the visuals were definitely significant, especially during the process of finding the three missing bodies, in being able to portray emotions and the guide the story to a better understanding. I continued find the pride and passion that never stopped growing and admire the perseverance to try and seek out ways to start small and unite people who were influenced to have like-minds.

                                                                                                             Sincerely,

                                                                                                                     Shela

September 23, 2019

March Response

 

 

Dear John Lewis,

        Based on what I’ve read so far, your story, March, incorporates great details that contributed to the fact that segregation was an ongoing event many were struggling against, including yourself, back in your time. The risk of lives taken and the danger that surrounded the colored community continued to increase, which can be particularly seen when the church in Birmingham was bombed. This resulted in the deaths of the four children and sparked intentions to take action. Members of organizations, like the SNCC, responded to this incident by trying to propose ways to effectively execute justice without violence in order to unify and direct their outrage in ways that it can be heard, starting with the rights to vote.

       While reading this story, I felt profoundly connected with the way the visuals correlated to the narrative. I was able to visualize the situation more clearly and grasp a better understanding of the empathy I felt as the story progressed with the violence that occurred. The introduction of the book with the bombing of the church, I felt, was a great way to start the story since it gives a strong sense to the severeness of the situation and insights to the actions and goals that develops throughout the story. In the case of today’s issues, we as a community should focus more on societal interactions and the discipline to be open-minded to any situation. I feel there isn’t a real general solution to the problems faced today, but I think focusing on interactions in society will influence the way many people interpret things since most of it revolves around the fact that the development of how one perceive things excludes other major factors that should also be considered.

                                                                          Sincerely,

                                                                                      Shela