WASHINGTON – MARCH 21: Speaker of the House Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) (C) carries the gavel that was used when Medicare was passed while marching with Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) (2L), Majority Leader Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-MD) (L), Rep. John Larson (2R) (D-CT), Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) and other members of the Democratic Caucus from the Cannon House Office Building to the U.S. Captiol for the health care reform vote March 21, 2010 in Washington, DC. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) said he was confident that the Democrats have the necessary 216 votes to pass landmark health care reform legislation today. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Photo via SCLC.
Caption: The 3rd Selma Civil Rights March. From far left: John Lewis, an unidentified nun; Ralph Abernathy; Martin Luther King, Jr.; Ralph Bunche; Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel; Fred Shuttlesworth. Second row: Between Martin Luther King, Jr. and Ralph Bunche is Rabbi Maurice Davis. Heschel later wrote, “When I marched in Selma, my feet were praying.”
Credit the Tea Party for helping drive home an analogy far more powerful than Nancy Pelosi marching through the streets of DC with the gavel used to pass Medicare. By spitting on John Lewis the day before and also showering him with the n-word, the radical right not only gave Lewis every justification to link this walk to March 1965 and the march from Selma to Montgomery but to also visibly tie the health care legislation to the civil rights movement and a larger push for freedom.
In the first photo, that’s Lewis far left in ’65. In the bottom photo, we can’t really say, looking at Lewis, that he is anxious about approaching the crowd of demonstrators, but that doesn’t matter. Given the incident the day before, Lewis’s expression not only forces us to consider the possibility, but can’t help but link this photo, and the former Civil Rights leader’s concern to the haters.Video clip: Pelosi, Lewis, et. al march through Teabaggers (YouTube)