b"POLITICSGet Your Knee Off Our Necks!and systems that have kept us down for years, Getreeked of music, laughter and joy.We witnessed and By Kimbra Murray your knees off our necks.We were extremely grate- accomplishedsomethingbiggerthanus.Wemade ful and thankful to be in the presence of Civil Rightsand saw history.Leader Reverend Al Sharpton.Both Moe and I feelWe left Washington feeling empowered, recharged, O nAugust28,2020,MoniqueClaiborneandIit was the greatest moment weve experienced. Hisincluded, beautiful, validated, encouraged, humbled experienced one of the most profound momentspresence exudes power, his words left us more deter- and strong.It is our duty, and obligation to continue of our lives for several reasons.The Commitmentmined, motivated, and informed. He gave us confir- to make a difference.We owe our ancestors, ourselves March,heldinWashington,D.C.,attheLincolnmation we were doing everything right. We are voicesand future generations.We will continue to make a Memorial, Get Your Knees Off Our Necks was host- for all injustices and will continue to fight!difference and inflict change!Thank you Jesus for ed by Reverend AL Sharpton, and Dr. Jamal BryantWe were also able to view and visit,giving us this opportunity and keeping us safe!(crowdestimatedaround500,000).(withrestrictions),historicplaces, TheMarchoccurredonthe57thsuch as the White House, Lafayette anniversaryofthe1963MarchDr.Square, Episcopal Church, St. Johns MartinLutherKingJr.,whereheandBlackLivesMatterPlaza.The delivered his I had a dream Speech.White House was severely barricaded Fifty-sevenyearslater,herewewith tall six foot fences, then concre-are, returning to the same place, toate barricades, not to mention heavy fight for the same reasons, racism,armed police surrounding the build-justice,equality,andpolicebrutal- ing 24-7.Lafayette Square, is a 7acre ity.We listened, to several power- publicparkwhichsitsrightacross ful speakers seeking change, MartinthestreetfromtheWhiteHouse. Luther King III., Congressional BlackProtesters were vigilant and continu-Caucus, Representative Joyce Beatty,ouslychantedthroughouttheday CongressmanAlGreen,JoyReid,into night! A great surprise upon the Yolanda King, Randi Weingarten andentrance/exit,(dependingondirec-familiesofGeorgeFloyd,BreonnaMonique Claiborne, left, and Kimbra Murray tionyourwalking),waswitnessing Taylor, Eric Garner and others led byaposterofElijahMcClainhanging Attorney Benjamin Crump. on the top of the fence of Lafayette We proudly stood on the seventh step of LincolnSquare.Seeing his face, helped to solidify our pur-Memorial,wecouldalmosttouchthespeakers.pose. This Aurora, Colorado young man made it to When we turned around, we could see, thousandsLafayette Square, just like us, only we are alive. of protesters, all colors, genders and ages gatheredAdjacent to Lafayette Square, one block away from in unity and peace. We shouted out response chantsthe White House is St. Johns Church.What once together,BlackLivesMatter,Sayhername,Iwas a place to gather and worship, is now by sight, cantbreathe,NoJustice,Nopeace,tonameaboarded windows, surrounded by barricaded six foot few.Hearing the roaring sounds and the power infences,concreatebarriers,andheavyarmedpolice the voices in unison, was like an amplified micro- force, twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. phone. We cried, laughed, shouted, and applauded.The site left us feeling sad and drained.Especially The moment was beautiful, motivating and powerful! when Moe took a several pictures of the church and one picture revealed a leaning building.ThisMarchonWashingtonshowsourcommit- The icing on the cake for us was the, BLACK LIVES ment to fighting for the oppressed, the marginalized,MATTER PLAZA.Not only is Black Lives Matter a the neglected people of this country, says Reverendstreet sign, but the words are painted in bright yel-Sharpton.Wearetiredofthemistreatmentandlow and stretched out on the street representing a the violence that we, as Black Americans, have beenfour block radius.BLMP is blocked off with concre-subjected to for hundreds of years.Like those whoate barriers and is a safe place for the public and marched before us, we are standing up and tellingvendors selling, shirts, jewelry, posters, books, mask, the police, telling the lawmakers, telling the peopleand many more.BLMP was an outdoor celebration, it BACK IN THE DAY'We Listened to the Same Music, Shared the Same Struggles and Dreams'By Dwayne Burris period!Good,godlywithcharacter,When I was growing up, some of us pride and Respect. moved around the corner, joined the MeandMrs.Jonesshouldhaveserviceandwenttoworkorschool. W henIwasgrowingup:Thebeenhomeat6:30.SheworeanNow people grow away and astray as if alphabetstartedwithAandadult dress and at times, hot pants.they were Born to be Wild. endedwithZ,nowtheresLGBTQIAToday shes single, counting abortionsWewereencouragedtoeatveg-+ and God Only Knows. Black andand wearing less. Never cheat, lie oretables.Wegrewalotofourfood. bluewasadivision,notwhathap- steal is what we were taught becauseMy grandparents raised chickens and pened to your face after you got arrest- theres a Spirit in the Sky. hogs. We had eggs, good water, fresh ed - Crazy. We watched Cassius Clayair and worked up a sweat. There was (laterMuhammadAli)inthemidstOh Happy Day, we listened to thefunandlaughter.WehadLoveand of assassinations, bombings, marchessame music, shared the same strug- Happiness.and riots. glesanddreamsandatesoulfood. There were the Flintstones, $13,000Buttoday,YouveLostThatLovingSomeofouroldclotheshadholes houses and $3,000 cars. We DancedFeeling.Wesaidpleaseandthankin them but we didnt buy them that to the Music, by doing the frog, theyou rather than I want this, that andway.Styleschangedinthe60sand jerk,themonkey,thetwistandthethese.Weaskedquestionswhenwewe wore bell bottoms, dashikis, jeans, watusiwithsomemashedpotatoes.didnt understand instead of question- t-shirts,polyester,mini-skirts,go-go WelookedoutforeachotherEighting what we dont want to do. boots, platform shoes and turtlenecks. DaysaWeek.Family,friendsandWe read about Dick, Jane and Sally,What a Wonderful World.freedom were important to us, unlikeIntheWest,peopledisapprovedofwesawSpotrunwithMike,PamWe strived for eXellence because we todaywhenpeopledieandkillfortheVietnamWarandWalmartfirstand Penny but Johnny wasnt payingusually had to be twice as nice. Last drugs, money and gangs. openedin1963.Wetalkedaboutattention. So the core of our educationhiredandfirstfiredwastruemore Jesus, Jonah and the whale as theyisnotsocommon.Soupandsand- often than not. Yet, we kept the faith God could do anything but fail, nowsang Its Not Unusual while minori- wiches always went together but notbelieving A Change is Gonna Come.anythingisagod.WedeclaredGodties ended up in the belly of the beastsex and traffic.bless you and believed it, now politi- or jail. We were excited about life and had cians say it and dont even know Him.We got on our knees to pray, so weInGodwetrustwasokonourzeal.TodayImstillgrowingbutIve Preachers were not afraid to say Hellcould hear what God had to say - notmoney,nowpeopledonttrustGodhad a lot of help along the way. One even if some thought that Heaven isprotest before we were to play nor toandaredoingawaywithmoney-of these days Ill Walk Around Heaven 10 Zillion Light Years Away. make a Chain of Fools. Life mattered,thats The Twist with a chip in it.All Day.BODY OF CHRIST NEWS OCTOBER 2020 13"