Cong. Lewis tells SU students they have a “mandate” to vote
Congressman John Lewis implored Southern University today that they have "a mission and a mandate" to go out and vote in the Nov. 4 elections.
Lewis, one of the notable leaders of the Civil Rights movement, the students that must get involved in the political process because "your children and grandchildren will ask what did you do...what role did you play" in the elections of 2014.
More than 300 students and faculty members attended Lewis' stop over on his "Get on the Bus" effort to get more young people and African Americans to the vote. A busload of Southern students left with Lewis on an SU bus to early vote at the Baker voting precinct.
The Georgia Congressman, once called "the most courageous person of the Civil Rights Movement, talked about how he was inspired in the 1960s by the Rev. Martin L. King Jr. and others to push for voting and equal rights for African Americans.
"I've been getting in the way ever since," he told the crowd. Lewis was one of the architects of the famous March on Washington and one of the leaders beaten when on "Blood Sunday" when law enforcement authorities attack marchers at the foot of the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Ala.
He stressed to the audience that there were thousands of people who had been attacked over the years to win African Americans the right to vote across the country, but especially in the South.
"A lot of people gave a little blood to make it happen," he said.
In the end, Lewis pointedly addressed the students saying, "It's your time...to go to the polls to vote like you've never voted before."
Southern Interim Chancellor Flandus McClinton told Lewis that "It is my sincere hope that all members of the Jaguar Nation will 'Get on the Bus' with our esteemed guest..."