Google+

Turning 15 on the Road to Freedom

 

Turning 15 on the Road to Freedom

My Story of the 1965 Selma Voting Rights March

By Lynda Blackmon Lowery

As told to Elspeth Leacock and Susan Buckley

Illustrated by PJ Loughran

Dial Books

Hardcover, $19.99

128 pages, Illustrated

ISBN: 978-0-8037-4123-2

Book Review by Kam Williams

 

51Prp8p9AcL“Jailed nine times before her 15th birthday, Lynda Blackmon Lowery refused to give up the fight for equal rights. She was the youngest marcher on the historic 1965 voting rights march from Selma to Montgomery, Alabama. She vowed to make a difference—and she did.”

Lynda’s story of overcoming terror and winning one of our nation’s most important battles is eye-opening and inspiring—a memoir that brings us into the heart of the civil rights movement to offer compelling proof that young people can be heroes.”

— Excerpted from the Bookjacket

 

The recent brouhaha over whether or not LBJ was dissed in the movie Selma has unfairly shifted the focus from the brave marchers who had their heads cracked open by racist police to a U.S. President sitting safely in the White House hundreds of miles away. If you’re interested in an eyewitness account of what actually transpired at the Edmund Pettus Bridge back in March of 1965, I heartily recommend Turning 15 on the Road to Freedom.

 

As the title suggests, the author was a teenager when her grandmother first took her to hear Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. speak at a church in their hometown of Selma. Lynda Blackmon Lowery was instantly inspired by the charismatic leader to get involved in the Civil Rights Movement, even though she was barely in her teens.

She initially served as part of the support team for high school students staging sit-ins at segregated places like lunch counters and movie theaters. But when Dr. King returned in 1965, Lynda declared herself ready to participate in acts of non-violent civil disobedience, too.

Consequently, by the time she would turn 15, she had already been arrested nine times simply for seeking rights

Author:   Lynda Blackmon Lowery Photo:  © Robin Cooper

Author: Lynda Blackmon Lowery
Photo: © Robin Cooper

equal to whites. While in jail, she was subjected to torture prohibited by the Geneva Conventions, such as the occasion when she was left to roast in a windowless iron sweatbox until she literally passed out from the heat.

Later, during the first Selma march nicknamed “Bloody Sunday,” Lynda was not only tear gassed but knocked unconscious with a billy club by a cop calling her the “N-word.” It took 35 stitches to stop the blood gushing from her head, yet neither the beating nor the wound could discourage the determined young lady from joining the march from Selma to the Alabama state capital in Montgomery two weeks later.

All of the above is recounted in vivid detail in this illustrated memoir aimed at young adult readers 12 and older. That target demographic makes sense, given Lynda’s age at the time of the demonstration and the fact that, as she says, “The Selma Movement was a kids’ movement.”

Selma, as emotionally and absorbingly recalled by an unsung hero who persevered in the face of vicious intimidation on the part of the police.

 

To order a copy of Turning 15 on the Road to Freedom, visit:  http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0803741235/ref%3dnosim/thslfofire-20

Entertainment

Calvin and Company Get Real in Chicago

  Barbershop: The Next Cut DVD Review by Kam Williams Calvin and Company Get Real in Chicago  There's been a big change at Calvin's Barbershop since our last visit over a decade ago. The once-sacred male sanctuary has been converted to a unisex salon, and some feisty female employees have brought a new flava to the former man cave, including manager Angie (Regina Hall), flamboyant Draya (Nicki Minaj) and cynical Bree (Margot Bingham). Besides Ice Cube as Calvin, … [Read More its Good for You...]

Books

Recovering the Self Journal Offering Giveaway of New Issue on Goodreads

The quarterly journal Recovering the Self: A Journal of Hope and Healing (RTS) is offering Goodreads members in the United States a giveaway, starting July 19, 2016.The Michigan-based journal has just recently resumed publication with the first issue of the fifth volume. 20 printed copies of the issue are offered to Goodreads members, the giveaway offer ending midnight on July 30, 2016.The current issue is themed “Relationships” and explores at the nature of relationships in … [Read More its Good for You...]

Art

ART EXHIBITION: 150 Years After The Civil War

  Cynthia Groya 150 Years After The Civil War: A Contemporary Perspective January 10 - March 6, 2016 Artist's Reception: Sunday, January 24, 3:00 - 5:00 pm Nassau Club 6 Mercer Street  Princeton, NJ 08540 The ideas reflected in Groya's paintings express a conversation about struggle for equal rights in our culture, in our time. The origin of this struggle can be traced to The Civil War in our country, which ended 150 years ago. The … [Read More its Good for You...]

Real Estate

New Home Sales Jump in April

  New Home Sales Jump in April By Burt Carey Sales of new homes hit their highest rate since 2008 in April, according to the Commerce Department’s U.S. Census Bureau. April sales increased 16.6 percent over March figures, which correlates to a seasonally adjusted rate of 619,000 home sales projected for the year. The median price of those new homes was $321,000, the highest median price ever recorded. That’s up 9.7 percent from sales one year ago. The … [Read More its Good for You...]

Lifestyle

Dennis “Spanky” Hill Named the 2016 Recipient

  Dennis “Spanky” Hill Named the 2016 Recipient of the Perpetual Gulf Legends Award   Child actor Spanky McFarland brought laughter, energy, compassion and devoted friendship to the beloved Our Gang comedy films in the 1930s. Now, 80 years later, another Spanky is being honored for the same wonderful traits, with marinas and tournament weigh scales replacing Hollywood sets.   In a special ceremony at the captain’s meeting for this year’s Blue Marlin Grand … [Read More it Good for You...]

Outdoors

Dennis “Spanky” Hill Named the 2016 Recipient

  Dennis “Spanky” Hill Named the 2016 Recipient of the Perpetual Gulf Legends Award   Child actor Spanky McFarland brought laughter, energy, compassion and devoted friendship to the beloved Our Gang comedy films in the 1930s. Now, 80 years later, another Spanky is being honored for the same wonderful traits, with marinas and tournament weigh scales replacing Hollywood sets.   In a special ceremony at the captain’s meeting for this year’s Blue Marlin Grand … [Read More its Good for You...]

Sports

Tiger Woods Opts Out of U.S. Open, Quicken Loans

  Tiger Woods Opts Out of U.S. Open, Quicken Loans By Burt Carey Tiger Woods isn’t ready to stage a comeback just yet. The 14-time major champion sent messages via Twitter and his website Tuesday that he would not be competing at either the U.S. Open at Oakmont next week or the PGA Tour’s Quicken Loans tournament the following week. "While I continue to work hard on getting healthy, I am not physically ready to play in this year's U.S. Open and the Quicken … [Read More its Good for You...]

Business

Calling All Entrepreneurs: Creating “Buzz” For Your Brands

  Calling All Entrepreneurs: Creating “Buzz” For Your Brands by Amy Lignor   This is 2016. This is an election year. “Shark Tank” is a top show on television. And more than ever people want to be entrepreneurs; be in business for themselves and make some money. But even after all this time in the computer-age, entrepreneurs are finding it difficult to see the ‘niches’ they can get into to build their brand so that all consumers know who they are and why their … [Read More its Good for You...]

Travel

Inexpensive Dream Vacations to be Found in “America the Beautiful”

Inexpensive Dream Vacations to be Found in “America the Beautiful” by Amy Lignor Say “dream vacation” and 80% of American’s minds journey to those ritzy areas, like Paris or Athens…they dream of touring the castles of London or dive into the magical history and culture of Ireland. But very few ever get the fact or remember, perhaps, that America the Beautiful is called that for a reason. There are a slew of perfect vacation spots in the good, old U.S. of A. that offer … [Read More its Good for You...]

Google+