Friday, July 15, 2016

In Washington DC ‪#‎PeoplesMarch16‬

By Kelly Ann Braun, BAT Leadership Team and Ohio BAT

I saw three children with their mom, there for the rally, in the hotel lobby. They taught me that the board there was a touch screen. I forget where they were from, but feel sure of where they are headed.

I saw a child from Chicago step to the mic, and without script or paper, choke up while he realized with deep awareness that he was standing where his great granddaddy had stood. Leading, pleading for still for the same his granddaddy had wanted for him. 

I saw a huge circle of children sitting around a gentleman leading them in simple chants, that they might lead the march.

I saw two children help their daddy take a giant pencil out of a box, and I watched them as they watched him sing out his message once again. The daughter sang every single solitary word right along with him.

I saw two grandchildren there with their activist Florida grandma.

I saw the astute son of two Cali teachers, there for the entire NEA RA and the March.

I saw children lying in the heat, on their tummies, between the Lincoln Memorial and the Washington Monument, drawing out their posters for the march.

I saw two children with their mommy and daddy from Ohio. The teeniest sweetpea when I said "We marched for schools and teachers and for you" said "Oh I know, isn't it so wonderful" as she clasped her hands together. (yes, everybody can pause to say awwww.) The other one lobbied in DC with us last year, and this year sat in a poetry slam class with me. She is just entering 5th grade.

I saw a child working along side her dad at the front registration desk for the conference at Howard University.

I saw on that desk, coloring pages, and word searches, etc. in anticipation of all the children that were going to be there that day.

I saw a length of the hallway at Howard, lain with markers and mural paper to be filled by the children.
I saw a sea of children (not whining or complaining though they had just gotten off a super long bus ride) in J4J blue shirts.

I saw a 6 leeeetle children getting their J4J shirts that hung to their ankles, rubber banded so cutely at their backs, so they could march. All of them with one gorgeous, loving mama. (As a mom of 5, I know what energy she used in all of that.)

I saw children leading breakouts. I totally look up to them, admire them and am led by them, but they still hit that heart corner of youth...for they are only a drip drop older than my youngest.

I saw Reverend Barber invite the children to the stage. It must be that in the forefront of our fight we know that it is for the children always.

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