21ST-CENTURY FREEDOM RIDE
50 years ago, after the brutality of “Bloody Sunday” in Selma, AL, Dr. Martin Luther King called on people of good will—black and white—to come to Alabama and support the local struggle for voter registration. Thousands came, forcing a crisis that eventually led to the Voting Rights Act. But before the Selma to Montgomery March, there were years of NAACP work, Citizenship Schools, and SNCC organizing that laid the group work for SCLC’s dramatic campaign. As young people and faith communities across America work to imagine an effective campaign against racial injustice in our criminal justice system, the 21st-Century Freedom Ride examines the little known and behind-the scenes work that build and sustained the Southern Freedom Movement prior to Selma. The trip is guided by Bob Zellner, field secretary for the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), original Freedom Rider, and organizer in today’s Forward Together Moral Movement.
What past 21st Century Freedom Riders had to say about their experience...
"I talk and think about race every day. The 21st Century Freedom Ride was a great way to connect with others, learn new perspectives, and build from the leaders and events of the Civil Rights Movement. It has challenge me to think about my role in this movement in radically different ways. I'm so thankful for this experience!"
"There is a river of faith-rooted resistance that has flowed through this country since it was built by slaves. The 21st-Century Freedom Ride is a way to plunge into that river and follow its current where it leads us today."
Below is a sample itinerary from the 2015 ride:
Wednesday, May 6th
Durham, NC to Birmingham - “Ella Baker and the Student Movement: 1960-1963”
Thursday, May 7th
Birmingham to Selma - “What Birmingham’s Children Taught the Movement”
Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, Brown Chapel A.M.E. Church, Selma, Edmund Pettus Bridge
Friday, May 8th
Montgomery to Americus - “Rosa Parks as Mother of American Nonviolence”
Rosa Parks Museum, Equal Justice Institute
Saturday, May 9th
Koinonia Farm, Americus, Georgia - “Clarence Jordan’s Demonstration Plot”
Sunday, May 10th
Americus, GA to Durham, NC - “The Freedom Movement Today”