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Peace Pilgrimage Trip Review from Students

This past weekend Visitation Academy students attended a peace and justice trip to Memphis and Birmingham to learn about the history of America as well as its intersection with the present day. Students attended various museums to broaden their mindsets and bring back their crucial takeaways to share with the Viz family.  Two students, Jay Johnson and Katie Ferrick, were able to share their thoughts on the trip in an interview


What was the most impactful place that you visited while on the trip?

Jay: I would say that the legacy museam was very impactful because it highlighted the lives of black people from the beginning of slavery to the  mass incarceration's that occur today. The Lynching Memorial was also very was very saddening an important place. It showed the names and dates of all documented lynching's that have occurred in America from 1800-current day. We also visited the 16th Baptist Street bombing, a church bombing that resulted in the death of four girls. The men who committed the crime were only charge for the murder of one child 45 years later.


Katie: The most impactful place that I visited and learned about on the trip was the Legacy museum. This museum displayed personal accounts from incarcerated people and accounts from family members of those who were lynched.


What were some important historical moments that you learned?

Jay: On the trip we learned about different types of protests during the civil rights movement, as well as a groups of people that were called the freedom writers. These groups of protesters would travel all throughout the south on a buses to help desegregation effects


Katie: Learning about Martin Luther King's letter from Birmingham Jail, which was a letter that King wrote to the church highlighting the importance of taking action at the time, was very important to me.


How would you say that those moments affected our lives today?

Jay: These moments affect our lives everyday because without these historical moments this country would not be where it is today.


Katie: These sentiments are the foundation of equal civil rights in this country and are still important in protests today.


What did you learn about that you think should be talked about more today?


Jay: In school we normally discuss key points in the civil rights movement that we are comfortable with, such as peaceful protests or the great things that came out the civil rights movement. While these things are important, it’s also important to discuss topics that we are not comfortable with, such as bombings or lynchings, so we can fully understand the civil rights movement.


Katie: I think that today we should talk more about the lynching's that occurred and how capital punishment has replaced lynchings in our world today.


Did you learn anything that was shocking?


Jay: Being a educated person of color, I was pretty prepared coming on the trip and knew a lot of the stuff we discuss and learned. But that is a privilege and I believe everyone should know about the things we learned.


Katie: I already knew a lot about the civil rights movement and racism in america, but there was specific events that I found more details about that were extremely saddening.



Would you recommend this trip-and if so, why?


Jay: I would recommend it for people who have a basic understanding and for people who don’t. it’s a trip that helps you have a deeper education of what’s happened  and what’s currently happening to the people in this country


Katie: Yes I would recommend this trip because its important to talk about the traumatic events black people in America had to face over the centuries.


History never repeats itself but it does often rhyme.

-Mark Twain

By: Adele Finney and Noor Huda

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