My son and I visited the Freedom Riders exhibit this past Sunday for classwork he had to do.
The exhibit was held at Tallahassee’s Mary Brogan Museum of Art and Science, which has closed its regular operations due to budget issues.
Even though the museum is mostly closed, some of the kid activities were still there:
A chance to get things whipped up into a frenzy remains.
But it is still possible to create calm:
Wayne (not surprisingly) wanted to do a lot more playing with the leftover youth-related activities than reading of the historical information about the Freedom Riders. I guess being there, reading the material and looking at the pictures, is a start.
But my sense that it is almost impossible for a 2012 12 year old (or a 47 year old mom, to be honest) to really understand the courage and risk that the Freedom Riders exhibited in 1961 leaves me feeling unsettled.
Non violence, in times like 1961, was not “calm.” The Freedom Riders experienced something related to each week of the Poetic Winter Photo Challenge.
Solitude – sometimes making the right choice means doing it by yourself
Warmth – the original Freedom Rider bus was set aflame by Klansmen
Passion – the Freedom Riders were consumed with protecting constitutional rights
Calm – although it was tested over and over, the Freedom Riders maintained a commitment to nonviolent activism
“The Freedom Ride created an unbelievable sense: Yes, we will make it.
Yes, we will survive.’
Congressman John Lewis, an Original Freedom Rider
Wife of one, Mom of two, Friend of many.