MSC memorializes historic march
Published: Tuesday, August 27, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, August 27, 2013 00:08
Fifty years ago, 300,000 people marched on Washington as the civil rights movement fought against the segregation and unequal treatment of minorities that was still embedded in various
Throughout this week, the Woodson Black Awareness Committee (WBAC) is hosting an event titled “Celebrating 50 years: The March on Washington Exhibit” that commemorates the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington in 1963, during which Martin Luther King Jr. gave his famous “I have a dream” speech.
Not only does 1963 mark the year Dr. King and 300,000 other citizens peacefully protested the infringement of rights, it also represents the first time Texas A&M admitted black students and women.
The significance of this date and its importance to both the University and the nation is not lost on the organizers of
“It was a major moment in history,” said Lyndon Pryor, Program Advisor for the WBAC. “The March on Washington encapsulates what the Civil Rights movement was and had come to be.”
A walk down 12th Man Hall in the MSC reveals a series of board presentations highlighting important milestones in the Civil Rights movement, provided by the
WBAC. The presentations depict the Civil Rights movement as it occurred on Texas A&M’s campus in the 1960’s.
Aja Holston, senior political science major and chair of the WBAC, said the exhibit in the MSC allows students to actually walk through and experience events that to many may be just a piece of abstract history.
“[These events] are really important to reflect upon,” Holston said.
Such notable events highlighted in the exhibit include The Battalion’s coverage of the past debate in student senate on the desegregation of Texas A&M. After a lengthy debate, the article reads, the senate voted in favor of desegregation. However, the article also references a student body poll in favor of continuing segregation.
Cristian Rodriguez, freshman architecture major, said this event shows the importance of remembering how the country has evolved.
“I think [the event] is good because it reminds people of what has happened in the past,” Rodriguez said.
On Wednesday, the WBAC will put on “Voices from the March on Washington,” an interactive event at 6 p.m. in Rudder Plaza that aims to show students what it may have felt like to be at the March.
“The exhibit [in the MSC] gives students the visual education part of the program, and Wednesday will be the theatrical part,” Holston said. “People can not only read what happened, but walk through and experience it.”
The event at Rudder Plaza will feature current and former students reenacting speeches and songs performed during the March on Washington. Holston said the event is not only about commemorating an important milestone in US history, but also in the history of Texas A&M’s.
“The March on Washington was one of the largest non-violent acts of Civil Disobedience, and a student should be able to reflect on the progress that we have made, and the progress that we still need to accomplish,” Holston said.