Every year, since 2012, I have posted this piece I wrote. In light of today’s racial unrest, particularly from the campaign trail, we need to hear these words more today than ever.
By Vince Gonzales, September, 2012
Four little girls. So few remember the event, fewer remember their names.
Four little girls on 16th Street in Birmingham, Alabama.
Four little girls, on a Sunday morning, walking into church. A box of dynamite, planted under the steps with a timer.
Four little girls, with 18 of their friends, entering the basement to hear a sermon…”The Love That Forgives.”
Four little girls, their lives ended by hate.
Addie Mae Collins, Denise McNair, Carole Robertson, Cynthia Wesley.
Four little girls, a moment of time, frozen in our hearts and minds, so many years ago today…on that Sunday morning in church.
I, for one, will say their names today.
I will say their names with a resounding voice.
Let our collective voices be louder than that hate-filled explosion.
May the memory of the sacrifices Addie Mae, Denise, Carol and Cynthia made never be forgotten.
Not martyrs by choice, just four little girls.
Four little girls that changed the world.