Thursday, August 14, 2014

Jailed for Justice Tour: Day 16, Marietta

 What an amazing stop to end the Jailed for Justice Tour! Emerson UU and Cobb County NAACP rolled out the red carpet for our amazing panel and we were able to end this incredible tour on a high note. One of our larger panels, on our last night of the tour we heard from 5 people who were arrested, including UU Minister, Karen Reagle. Two of our panelist, Bob Goodman and Sara Gregory, were telling their stories for the first time and were terrific!

It was amazing to see the relationship that was created around the Jailed for Justice Tour. The UU congregation and the Cobb Co. NAACP joined together to cohost the event and built a new working relationship in process that will help MMGA grow in Marietta. As we heard from the Cobb Co. NAACP President from the pulpit of the Emerson UU Sanctuary, I knew that a new coalition had been formed, Moral Monday Marietta! This will only strengthen the Moral Monday Ga coalition and it added to the power of our last tour stop.

The mood was festive as people crowded into the beautiful Emerson Sanctuary, it was a great multi-generational crowd, who were on their feet after hearing from our panel. After hearing the personal stories of our arresttee's for the past 15 days I thought it might become repetitive but I was pleasantly surprised! I was still enthralled and inspired by each one of our panelist day after day. Even for the people who had spoken before, I learned something new every time.

As I heard each person's story I was reminded of the real beauty of Moral Monday. This movement is about each one of us. Individual people standing up and saying they aren't going to take it anymore. When we demand a better life and better world it is obtainable, if we work together. Moral Monday has given us that opportunity. It has given organizations a place to come together and create a space to work together. It has given us a call to action, a rallying cry for us to mobilize around. I cannot wait to see what Moral Monday will look like in Marietta and in each location we stopped on during the Jailed for Justice Tour.

As I look forward to the Moral March on Georgia on August 23rd I know that the people we met today in Marietta will help us raise our voices and demand change in Georgia. We will demand a better state and we will get it, because united we stand strong.

Jackie Rodriguez, Guest Blogger, AFSC Community Organizing Intern

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