I remember the crowd called
Our black player names.
How they rushed the court
When we won the games.
I remember the bomb in Birmingham
When the girls’ killers went free.
Then the march over Selma’s bridge
And the violence on TV.
I remember the Civil Rights Act
A master stroke by LBJ
The many tears of joy I shed
It was the dawning of a new day.
I remember how Vietnam exploded
How it took center stage.
The war dominated the news so much
That racism disappeared from the page.
But underneath all our triumphs
And the feeling of euphoria.
We would soon awaken to see
That it was too soon to sing Gloria.
For hatred never really disappears
But like an ember waits to flame.
It lurks in the hearts and minds of some
And couples with the chance of fame.
Racism’s there inside our hearts
Most of us not wanting to see.
It lies in wait for the spark
Whose flare will set it free.
Why is it that the things we do
So common for the majority,
Become a dangerous deathly threat
For those we call a minority?
A white boy seen in a hoodie
Is just a kid at play.
Why is a black boy dressed the same
Seen in such a different way.
We cannot only fault the men
Who shot the Georgia runner.
The fact that we are all to blame
Should not come as a stunner.
We need to look within our hearts
And purge our misconceptions.
We need to learn the simple truth
God loves us with no exceptions.
I thought that I had seen that day
But the journey was just beginning
I hope that those who follow me
Will see its triumphal ending.
– Cecil Rhodes,