It was 41 years ago today, March 7, 1965, when marchers were beaten at the Pettus bridge in Selma, Alabama as they attempted to march to Montgomery, State Capital of Alabama, to petition the Government of Alabama for the right of blacks to vote.
Under the order of Governor George Wallace marchers were beatern, bludgeoned, and refused passage.
I visited Montgomery Alabama two years ago and drove the route from Montgomery to Selma and crossed the Edmund Pettus bridge myself. I was very moved to remember what these Americans did to nonviolently push other Americans to give them their basic democratic rights to assemble, to speech, to vote.
George W. Bush's idea about bringing democracy and freedom to Iraq is a joke when you consider that it hasn't been that long that we have enjoyed it ourselves in the U.S.of A.
Here is part of what is written on the History Central web site
At a large memorial service for Lee, a march from Selma to Montgomery was announced that would take place on March 7th. The marchers set off for Montgomery, but as they crossed the Pettus Bridge, they were attacked by troopers. As the New York Times reported the next day: "The first 10 or 20 Negroes were swept to the ground, screaming, arms and legs flying, and packs and bags went skittering across the grassy divider strip and onto the pavement on both sides."
Nearly 100 of the marchers were hurt that day in Selma. The next day, civil rights workers and clergy from across the nation rushed to Selma. On Tuesday, many marched to the Pettus Bridge, where the marchers stopped for prayer and then, obeying a federal court injunction, returned to Selma. On March 21st, after the court injunction had been lifted and the Alabama national guard had been federalized to provide protection, the march began again. The march proceed to Birmingham without significant incident.