Representative John Lewis
Do you believe in equal rights for everyone? Representative John Robert Lewis does. He was born on February 21, 1940 in Troy, Alabama. He is currently 77 years old and lives in Atlanta, Georgia. He had a goal of African Americans being treated the same as everyone else.
In his early life, John attended all segregated schools. He did not believe that this was fair and wanted to challenge the Jim Crow laws because of how African Americans were being treated separately from others. But, his mother and father advised him not to. He was inspired by Rosa Parks and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. for all of the things that they were doing for the Civil Rights Movement. At school, John studied nonviolent protests, learning how to hold a protest, participate in a protest, and everything related to protesting. John went on to join the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC). He later was elected to become the chairman of SNCC in 1963. In 1964, John moved SNCC’s priorities to try to register African American voters.
In 1963, John played a big role at the “March on Washington”. In 1965, he went on and led the march at the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama. The march was halted by police and resulted in violence. The march became known as “Bloody Sunday” because of protestors refusing to turn around, so they were beaten and had tear gas shot at them by the police. Prior to this, John had been beaten and arrested multiple times along with a few others. After occurring events, such as the march on Edmund Pettus Bridge, John became known as one of the “Big Six” in the civil rights movement.
Later in 1977, President Jimmy Carter put Lewis in charge of ACTION, which is the federal volunteer agency. Three years later, he ran for the office of Atlantic City as a councilman. He won and made it into office a year later. In 1986, Lewis began representing Georgia’s fifth district in the U.S. House of Representatives.
John Lewis received multiple awards and achievements during his career. In 1975, Lewis received the Martin Luther King Jr. Nonviolent Peace Prize. Then in 2001, Lewis received the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award. Lastly, Lewis was given the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2011.
People like Representative John Lewis make me college ready. Just knowing that they did so much for what they believed in and never quit. They have gone through violence, hate, and much more, but they still stay strong. I will do the same to be college ready by not quitting and staying strong. Dedication goes a long way to become college ready.
John Lewis, Editors. (2017, April 12). John Lewis. Retrieved January 22, 2018, from Congressman John Lewis: https://johnlewis.house.gov/john-lewis
Wallenfeldt, J. (2010, October 27). John Lewis | American civil rights leader and politician. Retrieved January 22, 2018, from Encyclopedia Britannica: https://goo.gl/P46K4E