Weekly Recap: John Lewis: A Hero For Our Times
Alan, Mike F., Deb, Kimberly, Bryan, Dr. Bill, Dan, Donna, Janis, and Mike H.—your PDA national team.
Today, Progressive Democrats of America (PDA) mourns the passing of an irreplaceable hero, Representative John Lewis. He challenged all of us by saying, “Every generation leaves behind a legacy. What that legacy will be is determined by the people of that generation. What legacy do you want to leave behind?”
Please email your Representative, and ask them to cosponsor and work to enact H.Con.Res.100, “to establish a U.S. Commission on Truth, Racial Healing, and Transformation.”
The New York Times reported, “Images of [John Lewis’] beating at Selma shocked the nation and led to swift passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act. He was later called the conscience of the Congress.”
That brief recap only hints at the powerful, inspiring life of this incomparable man. He first gained prominence as a civil rights champion, leading “street heat” efforts—even in the face of police brutality.
After an incredible career as an organizer on the outside, John Lewis brought his passion for justice into the U.S. House of Representatives where he was so much more than just “the conscience of the Congress.”
He lived his life showing that the fight against injustice need not burn with destructive rage, nor burn out when confronted by an intransigent, unjust system.
John Lewis was the living embodiment of the “inside / outside” strategy that guides PDA’s activism. His example actually inspired us to launch PDA in the first place, and his memory will strengthen our resolve and commitment to “Justice or Bust.”
Today, we also commemorate the birth on July 18, 1918, of anti-apartheid revolutionary Nelson Mandela. After leading the struggle for justice—including during his imprisonment for 27 years—he served as the first elected president of a post-apartheid South Africa.
President Mandela’s words and legacy inspire us during these turbulent times. As he explained, “People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.”
We cannot afford to give in to despair. We’re continuing our work to save lives during the COVID-19 pandemic by promoting the healthcare policies we desperately need. Find out more about what we’re doing and how you can help.
Our elections are at risk! The House of Representatives passed legislation called the For the People Act (H.R.1) “To expand Americans’ access to the ballot box, reduce the influence of big money in politics, and strengthen ethics rules for public servants, and for other purposes.” Tell your Senators to follow suit.
The House of Representatives passed
the DREAM Act overwhelmingly. It
is long past time for the Senate follow
Help us push back against Trump’s cruel attacks on immigrants. Click here to tell Congress to defund and abolish ICE, to quickly pass the bipartisan Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act, and to end inhumane and deadly abuses against immigrants and asylum-seekers.
We have so much to do, but together we shall succeed!