We must keep going through the storms of life. Let’s take a look at what happened down there in Georgia at the State House. The police arrested State Rep. Park Cannon, once she catches her breath, this could be her Rosa Parks moment.
This incident reminded me of the movie entitled The Spook Who Sat by the Door, a movie that was pulled from theaters for various reasons. A movie made during the 1970s, about group empowerment for change, it had a message that many didn’t think people wanted a wider audience to hear in the ’70s, especially at the high point of the Black Power movement.
Sounds very much like what just happened at the State House in Georgia, when Gov. Kemp was surrounded by his boys, all wearing black suits, with the Callaway Mansion painting as the centerpiece. A mansion which represents a slave plantation where the family owned hundreds of slaves. Research shows the mansion, with slave houses in the woods, hidden from sight. Yet that painting was purposely used.
In searching for the definition of the word spook, several definitions show up, for example, to spook a horse, is when the horse acts aggressively out of fear; or it talked about ghosts; then there was this use, when the word ‘spook’ is often referring to an offensive slang word, used as a disparaging term for a Black person. This is the one that fits.
Let us remember the words of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., on this weekend, as we remember he was shot and killed on April 4, 1968, 53 years ago. In his letter from the Birmingham Jail, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.”
Let me be correct as a journalist, and quote NBC News who reported this story on Friday, March 26, 2021, that Georgia state troopers arrested Democratic state Rep. Park Cannon on Thursday after she knocked on Republican Gov. Brian Kemp’s statehouse office door as he signed a controversial elections bill into law in a closed-door ceremony.
Video of the incident shows Cannon being handcuffed after she knocked on Kemp’s door. All she wanted to do was to give argument for transparency of the bill signing. She was then forcibly removed from the state Capitol by two officers and surrounded by more while repeatedly identifying herself as a legislator, and was placed into a police car, and charged with two felonies.
My prayer for Rep. Cannon is that she will utilize this national moment, and continue to tell our story. Scripture tells us, in the book of Matthew 7:7-9. It says “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.”
Rep. Cannon did knock, but was treated as if she was indeed the spook who knocked on the door! With more than forty states changing voter laws, nationally, we all must get on board to help get HR1 passed, which is the John Lewis Voting Rights Bill.
According to Roll Call, it said, “Already in 2021, more than 250 bills in 43 states have been introduced by Republican state legislators that create more unnecessary barriers to voting. From cutting early voting, to increasing purges of voter registration lists, to limiting absentee voting options, these bills are shameless, partisan attempts to silence us.” And the list goes on and on.
Let us stay focused, remain vigilant, and we must get this voting mess straightened out. Don’t let them take us back to Reconstruction, which happened right after the Emancipation Proclamation, but when too many Black men got elected to the House and the Senate, then came Jim Crow! That’s where we are, folks.
Lyndia Grant is a speaker/writer living in the D.C. area. Her radio show, “Think on These Things,” airs Fridays at 6 p.m. on 1340 AM (WYCB), a Radio One station. To reach Grant, visit her website, www.lyndiagrant.com, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 240-602-6295. Follow her on Twitter @LyndiaGrant and on Facebook.