First for an admission… Today’s topic slant wasn’t going to be about a bridge’s name but it spawned from of one of the lunch conversation stories with Lynda Blackmon Lowery, MLK’s Celebration keynote speaker, as this and all stories needs to be shared. Shared because it changed my perspective of no matter how much I respect Senator John Lewis, the Edmund Pettus Bridge doesn’t need to be renamed after him…

Ms Lowery like Lewis lives with scars from the March 7th 1965 brutal beatings received from law enforcement officers during the ‘peaceful’ voting rights march over the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama, only she was just 14.

She has no problem vocalizing her emotional disdain over changing the name of that very same bridge. Here’s how she put it “They have no right changing the name of our bridge. WE all know who it was named for and exactly why that name should never be changed. “

Wikipedia states Edmund Winston Pettus was a former Confederate senior officer, an Alabaman senator from 1897 to 1907 and no secret known for being the Grand Dragon, the head of the Ku Klux Klan. “The bridge was named for him, in part, to memorialize his history, of restraining and imprisoning African-Americans in their quest for freedom after the Civil War,” says University of Alabama history professor John Giggie. The Pettus’ family profited enormously from the economy of the Deep South, owning slaves and producing cotton. But it was Pettus’ belief in white supremacy, and not pure economics that drove his support for the Confederacy. “

Ms Lowery animatedly shook her fists and head as she retold of the elation she felt when she recrossed the Edmund Pettus bridge on March 9, 2015 with President Obama, John Lewis and many other dignitaries and survivors to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Bloody Sunday. She said she knew it must have made Edmund Pettus’s bones rattle knowing a Black President walked over that bridge…

And yes, they must have been rattling below is a video clip of President Obama’s 3 most important remarks regarding the march not being over during the 50th anniversary of Bloody Sunday. Let us remember and continue the fight for the eradication of racism…

and another the 50th Anniversary clip of Bloody Sunday…–president-obama-crosses-selma-bridge-409815619542

Here’s Ms. Lowery sharing photos at lunch with the most recent recipient of the Lynda Blackmon Lowery award, Jonah Harlan, a local high school sophomore. The photos are her meeting the Obamas on the 50th Anniversary March of Bloody Sunday.

BTW Jonah did her proud last night as he spoke of his recognition of his own white privilege…

May the torch continue to be passed…


  1. Always enjoy hearing stories of the history of a landmark, bridge, or person in our country. I think once they name a place or bridge or whatever it should remain that name. There is a lot of history behind the name Edmund Pettus..

    Liked by 1 person

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