A great weekend for us allPublished 9:21am Tuesday, March 5, 2013
It’s easy to get lost in the political pictures that were cast across Sunday’s events of the annual Bridge Crossing Jubilee. It’s easy to be shallow about the experiences and take a skeptical view of what was going on, instead of looking deeper, understanding what took place Sunday.
For all the comments that were made in advance of Vice President Joe Biden’s visit to Selma, all those that were made during his visit, and those made online and on Facebook after the vice president’s visit, much was done and much was accomplished.
For one afternoon, the eyes of the country were fixed upon our city. They were fixed upon the place we are fortunate to call home. And, whether that vision was positive or negative in your mind is irrelevant.
What was relevant however, was that the second most powerful person in our country along with multiple Republican and Democratic leaders of Congress and other high-ranking officials were in our community for the day, talking to our city and state leaders, understanding more about Selma and Dallas County and understanding what we as a community are facing.
Yes, these meetings were done on a backdrop of the annual Bridge Crossing Jubilee, but that in itself should be something Selma — all of Selma both black and white — should take great pride in.
For one weekend out of the year, thousands upon thousands of guests flood our city, stay at our hotels, eat at our restaurants, shop at our stores, buy gasoline at our stations and leave behind tax dollars that are tremendously valuable.
Disagree if you will with those who organize these events, their intentions or their political leanings. Disagree with the politics of the guests they invite to speak and at times the messages they share.
But don’t for one moment begrudge the event itself and what it means to our city, our county. Without it, Selma would be worse off. Period.
As planning is already under way for the 50th anniversary of Bloody Sunday, we can only imagine this weekend proved to be a tremendously valuable dry run — a dress rehearsal if you will.
But regardless of what you call this weekend, what you think of the events or those who came, don’t think for one second that what took place over the weekend wasn’t short of spectacular for all of Selma and Dallas County.