By Casby Bias
Mar. 17, 2012
Don't describe a Civil Rights Pilgrimage as “fun": you stumble out of bed at around eight everyday for a week and get ready for another day of learning about those who sacrificed their lives for equality. But having the experience of going down south for a week and learning about the Civil Rights Movement definitely served as inspiring.
Gaining insight about historical tactics, such as sit-ins and marches, can influence you into developing new techniques for preventing social issues (e.g., Racism, Sexism, Classism). New techniques can help Marquette students create more of an alliance between each other.
One technique for improving social issues according to the current Sixteenth Street Baptist Church (place where four African-American girls were killed from a bomb in the 1960s) pastor is that all social issues could be solved with a church’s help. The Rev. Arthur Price Jr. said that with such practices as fundraising and listening to people within the community, today’s members could have just as much strength today, even without political help.
And Jackson, Miss., teaches you to prepare, or always have what you want for the future planned out. Staring at the dry, blood-stained “Welcome” mat in front of Medgar Evers’ (a Civil Rights leader) home can remind you that working out all the details for your followers for the future will help if your own plans hit a fork in the road.
But squeezing into a picture with 22 students and a group that consists of one of the 1960 Freedom Riders can imply the most important technique of all: organizing, or taking what you’ve prepared and pursuing its action. The smell of perspiration may fill the room, but you don’t care. No. You just look down and can’t believe how all these inspirational people who sit inches away from you, including Freedom Rider Dolores Williams, fit into one photo.
Oh, yes. You know you want to go on this trip next year.
The Civil Rights Pilgrimage is an alternative spring break opportunity that allows 22 Marquette University members to go down South and visit six cities that involved the advance of the Civil Rights Movement. The group learns about the people who helped develop and promote social awareness for the Civil Rights Movement.
I’d recommend people go on the trip, but be warned: coming back, you won’t help but feel different. Milwaukee is one of the most segregated cities in the U.S., so after the unity-shock fit into one week, you can’t help but to cringe at all people with different races, sexual orientations, religions, etc., laughing, walking on campus, and only interacting with people who look and act like them when you come back to school.
Consider the tactics- using church, working out details to any plan and forming the plan in respect to the society- for a cause that you’re passionate about. Remember: it’s one thing to keep talking about change. It’s another thing when someone stands up and does something about it.