Hundreds march in St. Paul to remember 'Bloody Sunday' in Selma


Sunday's march in St. Paul was both a celebration and a chance to "re-commit" to seeking justice and equality for everyone.

Hundreds of people gathered at the State Capitol building that afternoon to remember "Bloody Sunday," the 1965 Civil Rights Movement voting rights march from Selma to Montgomery that ended with demonstrators being assaulted by officers. Many suffered serious injuries.

The St. Paul event was an opportunity to acknowledge the horrors of that day, while also looking toward the future.

"We will come together across all that could divide us to be unified in this moment in recognition of the interfaith march of 1965 from Selma to Montgomery, with hopes of inspiring continued partnerships," wrote the organizers, Crossing Bridges: Selma to Minnesota. "We are stronger together in bringing justice to this broken and hurting world."

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The march started at the State Capitol building and continued into downtown St. Paul, ending at Central Presbyterian Church. There, a handful of prominent activists – including Rev. Dr. Barbara Holmes, who was in Montgomery 50 years ago in the immediate wake of the attacks.

MPR profiled Holmes, who talks about her Connecticut family hearing the call from Martin Luther King Jr. to come to Alabama in the wake of racial violence – the "Bloody Sunday" march; a peaceful, but failed, second attempt days later; and the killing of a white Minnesota man who supported the black marchers.

Holmes and her family traveled to Montgomery, surviving threats of violence and harassment both on the way there and after they arrived.

According to the Star Tribune, the crowd Sunday in St. Paul turned Selma into a rally cry; but some who attended said while they've seen signs of progress in addressing inequality, many issues still remain.

The Selma to MN group estimated about 700 people marched.

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