Neighbors live just across ‘The bridges’

By ALLEN FARLEY / Guest Columnist

Do you ever get the impression there are individuals who have become somewhat content with focusing on events that occurred many years ago? (Are there residents in today’s Alabama who really need to walk across an old bridge and tell their 2015 story)? Obviously, there is still a lot of political mileage to be gained when our nation’s media gather to focus on an historic event that took place on an old bridge in Selma, Alabama, in 1965. (Unforgettable images that captured the anger of Alabama law enforcement officers savagely beating American citizens for walking peacefully across a bridge).
Has the respect and reverence we have attached to the images of the faith warriors memorialized on those old black and white pictures somehow caused us to narrow our vision? I believe we have become reluctant to pan our modern-day cameras, and consciences, away from “The Bridge” and focus our hearts and minds on current living conditions we really need the world to see. Pictures of families and communities located within short distances of Selma’s Edmund Pettus Bridge that continue to live in unbelievable poverty and disadvantage. (Can’t you hear the spirits of the saints who braved the terrors of Bloody Sunday calling out in unbelief?)
How do we put our people back to work, raise our high school graduation rates and lower our prison population? First, we’ve got to find a way to instill the passion and vision of the faith marchers who made the commitment to step onto “The Bridge” in Selma 50 years ago.
1 Peter 5:2 states: Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, serving as overseers – not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not greedy for money, but eager to serve.
God Bless America!!!

Allen Farley represents portions of Jefferson and Shelby Counties in Alabama’s House District 15. Representative Farley can be contacted at allenfarley@bellsouth.net, or 960-7526.