Vice President Kamala Harris Joins Anniversary Commemoration of Bloody Sunday on Alabama Bridge

Vice President Kamala Harris to join in marking anniversary of Bloody Sunday on Alabama bridge

Vice President Kamala Harris is anticipated to join the commemorations for the 59th anniversary of Bloody Sunday, a pivotal moment in the Civil Rights movement when Alabama law enforcement officers assaulted demonstrators advocating for voting rights on the historic Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama.

The demonstrators, marching across Alabama on March 7, 1965, faced brutal beatings from officers as they sought to advance the cause of voting rights. This Sunday, a march across the bridge, a symbolic gesture integral to the annual Selma Bridge Crossing Jubilee, is scheduled.

The Selma Bridge Crossing Jubilee, a series of events spanning from Thursday to Sunday, honors Bloody Sunday and the enactment of the Voting Rights Act. The White House announced that Vice President Harris would deliver a speech during which she would pay tribute to the civil rights movement’s legacy, address ongoing efforts towards justice for all, and urge Americans to persist in defending fundamental freedoms facing challenges across the nation.

Harris previously participated in the march in 2022, emphasizing the significance of the site as hallowed ground and delivering a speech urging Congress to safeguard democracy by preserving people’s right to vote. Reflecting on the anniversary, Harris spoke of the peaceful protestors who were met with violent suppression, recounting how they knelt in prayer as state troopers charged and billy clubs struck.

Vice President Kamala Harris
Vice President Kamala Harris (Credits: NBC News)

U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland was also expected to partake in Sunday’s events, as announced by the Department of Justice. The shocking images of violence at the bridge catalyzed national support for the passing of the Voting Rights Act in 1965, eliminating barriers that had disenfranchised Black voters.

Congressman James Clyburn of South Carolina, leading a pilgrimage to Selma, stressed the significance of the events, emphasizing that while progress had been made since 1965, the right to vote remains vulnerable. He underscored Selma’s pivotal role in the fight for voting rights and expressed concern over current efforts to undermine these rights.

Clyburn emphasized the importance of this year’s march, describing it as an inflection point for the nation. He expressed hope that the weekend’s activities would invigorate the civil rights movement and benefit the city of Selma economically.

Attorney General Merrick B. Garland’s presence at the event underscored the federal government’s commitment to upholding civil rights and combating voter suppression.

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