One Night With Dr. Mrylie Evers-Williams

Tonight I simmered and developed under the astute words and voice of Dr. Mrylie Evers-Williams at the MU Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Annual Event. Tonight I appreciated even more the heft of the Civil Rights Movement, the efforts and stirrings of the NAACP and other prestigious allied entities in the struggle for the God-given, democratic right to stand an American in America, and this, irrespective of creed and race and color. Tonight, I almost fully comprehended the struggle and the arduous means and methods through which the freedom or likeness of freedom to exist as an African-American came to be; not without sufficient blood and sweat and pain. I draw a fragile correlation here, to Nigeria’s Biafra War, a gruesome epidemic of civil strife that saw a people become inventive and strategic about the demise of another people based on the sheer anthropogenic technicality of ethnicity. Be that as it may, and almost as it is with any other such struggles for freedom and civil existence, it is my genuine hope that we would correctly hand over the essence of it all to our kids and their kids. Not the bitterness of it – as we love them too much for that – but the ethos and values of it. It is something we should not hesitate to converse about, to extract lessons in so doing. With the immense hope that humanity never again succumbs to a reoccurrence of such baser animalistic tendencies ever again, in what ever form, to whatever degree. Whether it be systematically, in a diversified workplace or politically in a small decrepit neighborhood in Brooklyn or physically at a Bustop in Kubwa or a police check stop in Nablus. Sadly, as is often the case, such prejudicial matters- as is now the case with an almost apathetic audience appreciation for stories (cue the movie Selma) and oeuvres (cue Chimamanda’s ‘Half of a Yellow Sun’) – that preserve the significance of our collective history are usually deprioritized for simpler, more swallowable distractions, sadly; because the issues of discrimination itch in places that never itched and the silence roundabout it is in many factitious ways, comforting.

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