At 3:00 PM on August 29, Gas South answered the call from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by joining the echo of bells ringing around the world to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington. Atlanta City Council President, Ceasar C. Mitchell led our city in the ringing of the bells to honor this important milestone.
I was 15 years old when Dr. King gave his speech. That speech was an important punctuation within the changes that were afoot. Here in Atlanta, when we traveled to other cities, we took a large box of food, as well as a small empty jar for me, since restaurants and restrooms were problematic. I remember that my race had to climb the outside fire escape and enter the balcony to attend shows at the Fox Theater. We never went. Lakewood Amusement Park, which had a roller coaster and dodgem cars, had a “Colored Day”, once a year. We went. And to have a complete football season, you had to play other black schools from Macon, Augusta, or Savannah. My, how times have changed.
Dr. King’s vision was for equality and for all people to be judged on the content of their character. The successes achieved against racial bias have been supplanted by the challenges of poverty and poor education. Let us not rest on our laurels. The work continues….