Talladega College Foot Soldiers
Recently, I watched and listened proudly as Alabama State Senator Henry Sanders, a Talladega College graduate and Harvard trained attorney, deftly fielded questions directed to him by Chuck Todd of MSNBC. Todd’s questions and Sanders’ corresponding responses were about the pending Alabama senatorial election. Senator Sanders closed the segment by inviting Mr. Todd to the annual Selma Bridge Crossing Jubilee during the first week of March 2018. Senator Sanders’ invitation to Chuck Todd, caused me to immediately reflect on the symbolism of the bridge crossing, its possible impact on the upcoming election, and the bravery of the participants who attempted to cross the Edmund Pettus Bridge on Sunday, March 7, 1965, the same year of my graduating from Talladega College.
The determined women and men who braved the clubs and tear gas of the police and Alabama National Guard, earned the name Foot Soldiers for Civil Rights. In 2015, I traveled with my wife, grand daughter and two friends to participate in the 50th Anniversary of the bridge crossing attempt and to meet the foot soldiers and thank them for their courageous march. I made a documentary of this event which can be located on my website, eugenecain.com (April 4, 2016 Episode).
As we talked to the Selma foot soldiers, one thing became crystal clear: They were all driven by pride and passion for justice. I see that same spirit of pride and passion manifesting itself in the women and men who labor tirelessly for Talladega College in their respective communities across the nation. Whether it’s continually calling on local Degans to show their love and appreciation for the College by donating their treasure and/or talent; recruiting students; telling the Talladega College story; forming alumni chapters; hosting chapter meetings; raising funds for the college; making endless telephone calls and sending countless email messages, they soldier on. Undaunted by a lack of shared enthusiasm for Talladega College by some, they continue in their determination to keep Talladega College as the Alpha Lyrae Vega of Them All. Their pride and passion for Talladega College shine continuously as they labor to keep Talladega College strong.
To the Talladega College Foot Soldiers, we salute your selfless activism on behalf of the College and thank you for your committed and continued service to Talladega College and TCNAA. May the New Year bring you and your families all you wish for and more.
From the Desk of the