So, this week jumped off with a bang. Yesterday, my 6 year-old and I participated in a rally for the release of the Scott sisters. The rally was organized by women from out of state, a collective called the Gray Haired Witnesses. The woman in the video above is Sister Marpessa, one of the members of the Gray-Haired Witnesses. I shot the video above at the rally yesterday after meeting her in person for the first time. I'm not sure of her debilitation (she was wheelchair bound), but, she is a warrior mama who has not allowed illness to stop her movement. She was the reason the majority of the folks, including me, were out there yesterday.
I met Sis. Marpessa last month when covering a story about the impending rally to release the Scott sisters. I was intrigued by their story. I called Sis. Marpessa, the listed contact, and we instantly formed a rapport. I later became part of the rally program, singing my song "The Blame Game".
The work of the Gray-Haired Witnesses-- a collective of elders who are engaged in activism and freedom efforts for African-Americans brutalized by the US Justice system--is inspiring on so many levels. I learned yesterday that they are inspired by women like Ida B. Wells-Barnett who is actually my long-time historical idol and the reason why I chose to be a journalist (as one of my jobs:-) Ida B. Wells was a freedom fighter who reported on lynching and risked her life speaking about the inhumane treatment of black people. Amidst death threats to her and her family, she never wavered.