James Jones column: The young are not restless in Dallas County

Published 7:36 am Monday, January 29, 2024

The youth in Selma and Dallas County have caught my attention at the start of 2024.

I enjoyed seeing the younger generation step up and volunteer at local events throughout the community during the month of January.

At the Emancipation Proclamation event on Jan. 1 in Safford, Sa’Nia Austin, Frankiya York, Australia McQueen, Markus Jackson, Zontavion York, Frank York, Vondories Turner, Madison Smiley, Jaden Ivory, Matthew McClendon volunteered their services and performed various skits.

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Evelyn Cox, Athelstein Johnson and Cindy Owens were sponsors. Johnson bragged about the children stepping up, as did President Melvin Flanagan Brown, who thanked them for their presentations. 

At the annual MLK Unity Breakfast presented by the Selma Links Chapter on Jan. 15, several teenagers served meals to the people who attended.

University of Alabama Law Professor Bryan Fair, the guest speaker at the Links Breakfast, thanked the youth in his speech. Many of the Links’ sponsors support the area youth, which I applaud. 

Here are the youth that volunteered at the MLK Links Unity Breakfast: 

-Carmen Benjamin, Camron Benjamin, Sydney Pritchett, Jamarion Rush, Deanisea Sullivan, 

Micah Thomas, Kenslee England, Jolie Jackson, Alexis Perry, Kristan Moore, Zachenzie Milhouse and Jamiya Edwards were sponsored by the National Youth Advisory of Foot Soldiers Park.

-The Senior Culturama Members, MaKayla Muse,  Karrigan Watts, Martasia Hardy,  Amari Green, Jordin Bell, Candace Pope,  Ambrielle Pope and Joi Calhoun, were sponsored by the Zeta Eta Omega  Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc.

From where I sit, the kids could easily be doing other things with their time. Especially during the holiday season.

I was more impressed by the teenagers showing up on MLK Holiday because of freezing cold temperatures. 

I am one of those people who does not like temperatures below 50 degrees. Keeping it real, I prefer my winter temperatures in the 60’s during the day and the middle 30’s at night. The only things I like cold are my soft drinks with ice and Reese Cup Blizzards.

But the teens did not hesitate to help in spite of the freezing temperatures. Many of the teenagers showed why they earned scholarships from local organizations like the Selma Quarterback Club, the Selma Links, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority and Bama Dallas-Wilcox Club.

With actions like those displayed recently, the future of Selma and Dallas County is in good hands. Some may be future mayors, ouncil members, probate judges, commissioners, doctors, nurses or attorneys.