As a black woman, I love to travel. And every now and then I end up somewhere that totally change my life. And the center for civil and human rights in Atlanta, Georgia was one of those places.
To understand why this place had such a significant impact on me. I have to share my background. YES, I am black. But I am not African American. I am a young woman born in the beautiful yet troubled country of Haiti. My family migrated to America when I was just six years old.
That means I grew up in a predominantly Haitian household. I speak Haitian Creole fluently, eat Haitian food, and listen to Haitian music. In my house, America was where I live not my country. It was not until I started entering my teens and going to college did, I really start exploring African American and Black culture.
Yes, I did all the school stuff during black history month. But I did not really understand them until I got older. That is why visiting the Civil and Human Rights Center was so significant for me.
To begin with, the center brought civil rights to life for me and it will for you.
I remember when I was in school. All we ever did during black history month was talking about things and watch them on tv. But to be in a museum and see the things that use to happen was a new experience.
I sat and listen to the riots, sat on a bus and ride with the freedom riders, felt what I was like to be yelled at by hate. And cried as I walked up the stairs as my attention was pulled by the death of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr..
Those feelings and experience were not feelings conveyed to me at school.
Secondly, I understood what the DREAM really meant and so will you.
Dr. Martin Luther king “I had a dream” speech. Is one that I can recite to you, but I did not really understand. It strucked me as odd that his dream is what we have today. Where white and black find it difficult to understand each other. Where fear is so prominent among the races.
But walking through the center and seeing how both whites and blacks stood together and fight for a cause was surprising. It made me appreciate the fact that not all white men are bad. It took any fear of them way from me. I was not afraid of them but now I had a better picture of humanity.
Dr. Martin Luther’s dream was that we live in unity with one another. That we play and be around each other not worrying about our skin tones but not denying them either.
And lastly, those pioneers who fought me
inpired me and they will you too. inpiere
It was incredible to get a small glimpse of their struggles. How hard those man and women worked to leave behind a legacy that I get to enjoy.
I learned that day to admire their courage, their zeal, their motivation for a better America and future. They did not just work for African Americans, their work affected me. Because of them I can do what I do every day. I get to enjoy a home that I would never had have. I get to walk down the street without fear of death. I bow my head to no man.
In the end, I experience gratitude for the war fought for the freedom that I enjoy today. I now run to learn everything that I can about these pioneers. what about you?