Remembering the past, embracing the future: Backwards bridge march planned

Published 12:00 am Monday, February 19, 2007

The Selma Times-Journal

A husband-and-wife team from Montgomery is asking all of Selma to march backwards on the Edmund Pettus Bridge to move beyond a tumultuous past.

William and Carolyn Boyd invite the general public to the first ever Pre-Bloody Sunday Re-enactment March on Sunday, Feb. 25 at 2 p.m.

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“The purpose of this march will be to remember the past while embracing the future,” said Carolyn. “Nevertheless, reminding our people to never burn bridges due to the fact that the bridge you burn today may be the same bridge you have to cross tomorrow. We will march backwards across the bridge as a symbol of us remembering the past in order to embrace our future and move forward.”

“Usually, after crossing the bridge every Bloody Sunday – from the president to local politicians – there is no mission or agenda on what needs to be done to carry on Dr. King’s legacy and I’m quite sure that the great civil rights leaders that gave their lives for us are displeased,” Carolyn added. “It’s just a reminder of the struggle with no possible solutions to the problems.”

The Boyds’ solutions include hosting a seminar for “business-oriented people who wish to combine their monies to open a shopping center that the residents of Selma could patronize” and establishing youth programs. The Boyds strongly encourage Selma’s youth to attend the march, saying the city’s future starts with them. The couple also asks the public to bring their guns to place in a live casket, “encouraging them to bury their guns and not their brothers and sisters,” Carolyn said.

“We still have black on black crime, overpopulated prisons, and a poor economic base,” Carolyn said. “Hopefully we’ll make an impact on those who are contributing factors in our problems today.”

The Selma High School Marching Band and area choirs are scheduled to perform at Sunday’s march, which is sponsored by the Rev. Kenneth Glasgow of Dothan, founder of The Ordinary Peoples Society and brother of Rev. Al Sharpton, The Lacey-Boyd Foundation in Montgomery and William Boyd, founder of Better Opportunities for Our People in Montgomery.

A car show along Water Avenue is among the march festivities.

“We ask that all colors and creeds come and march with us as we continue to fight for justice and equality,” Carolyn said. “The bridge that was crossed 42 years ago to assist us in gaining voting and other constitutional rights is the same bridge we must cross today to remind us of the struggle and that although the battle was won, the war isn’t over.”

For more information, call (334) 262-6260.