WE THE PEOPLE, have a RIGHT to free speech
Today I turned on the news and I saw Presidential Candidate Joe Biden commemorating the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing that occurred on THIS day, in the year of 1963. As I was listening to him speak, I thought about our Constitution, and that we have a right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
Embedded in the Constitution, we have the Bill of Rights. The first amendment in the Bill is the right to freedom of speech and protest. The first amendment is so essential and vitally important to our democracy because it gives power to us, through the use of our voice. We are a democracy! We are not a dictatorship! We must be firmly planted on the platform of the first amendment, because for black people, if we were silenced, the world would not have known of the atrocities that black people experienced then, and on some levels, NOW.
Four little innocent girls who were at 16th Street Baptist church that Sunday : Addie Mae Collins, Cynthia Wesley, Carole Robertson and Carol Denise McNair, died as a result of senseless hatred and racism. If black people were silenced, the nation would not have known about the Greensboro Sit-Ins that were first orchestrated by four young black men who attended North Carolina Agricultural and Technical College: Ezell Blair Jr., David Richmond, Franklin McCain and Joseph McNeil who later became known as the Greensboro Four. By February 5, 1960, around 300 students had rallied in unison and joined the protest at Woolworth’s “paralyzing the lunch counter and local businesses.” (https://www.history.com/topics/black-history/the-greensboro-sit-in)
And by the end of March, the movement had spread to 55 cities and 13 states.
If black people were silenced, the nation would have never known about the harshness of police brutality and racial profiling in America. Rodney King, Amadou Diallo, Trayvon Martin, Eric Garner, Michael Brown,Sandra Bland, Eric Logan...the list goes on! Because our voices could not be silenced, we now have our most recent civil rights organization fighting for equality- “Black Lives Matter.” If black people were silenced the nation would not have known about the civil rights protestors at the “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, Virginia on August 12, 2017. Heather Heyer, an activist fighting for equality, was killed on that day. But her fight for equality will not be forgotten, instead, it will be imprinted into the history of our nation. The fight for equality will go on.
Our voices will not be silenced. Our voices will not be diminished. Our voices will not be distorted. I will end with the Constitution of Generation Z. We the young people of the United States of America, in order to form a more cohesive union, must stand on principles and work toward justice for all. We must ensure acceptance of our differences and strive to learn and grow in wisdom. We must stand on truth and challenge bigotry.Make no excuses, only changes, and strive to the best that we can be to make way for a more humane and fair world. E. Pluribus Unum, “Out of many, one.” WE HAVE THE POWER!