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I had mixed feelings as I entered the movie theater to see “Selma” as a scholar of the civil rights movement. On the one hand, I am thrilled that there have been so many movies about African-American history and civil rights released in the past four to five years, but I’m always concerned about whether […] Read More

“Selma: Sustaining the Momentum” was the title of a Dean Peerman and Martin E. Marty article in “The Christian Century” 48 years to the month after colleague Peerman and I joined several thousand protesters and prayers at the Edmund Pettis Bridge in Selma, Ala. That was two days after “Bloody Sunday” when, in that case, […] Read More

Of all of Martin Luther King Jr.’s activism experiences, one of the lesser known remains one of the more compelling. Many people associate King with Bloody Sunday in Selma, Ala., on March 7, 1965—even though he wasn’t in Selma when activists there attempted their first march to Montgomery. Others match King with the actual 50-mile […] Read More

One car carried Viola Liuzzo and Leroy Moton. The other carried four Klansmen. The latter pulled alongside the former on a lonely stretch of U.S. Highway 80 between Selma and Montgomery. The Klansmen fired into Liuzzo’s car, killing her instantly. Moton survived by playing dead when the Klansmen returned to see what they’d done. The […] Read More

On Jan. 2, 1965, Martin Luther King Jr. led a “mass meeting” at Brown Chapel in Selma, Ala. This meeting kicked off the involvement of King’s Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) in Selma’s voting rights campaign. King had already survived the Montgomery Bus Boycott of 1955-56 and the brutal Birmingham demonstrations of 1963. He had […] Read More