It’s been just a few months because the loss of life of civil rights giant John Lewis, and though eloquent tributes from leaders like Barack Obama have attempted to sum up his legacy, it will in the end fall to future generations to absolutely verify his contributions to the purpose of racial equality in America. One of our maximum prominent modern-day historians, Pulitzer Prize winner Jon Meacham, offers an appreciative early evaluation in His Truth Is Marching On: John Lewis and the Power of Hope.
Meacham frankly admits that his ebook makes no attempt at a full-scale biography of Lewis. Instead, he focuses on the tumultuous duration from 1957 to 1966, when Lewis rose from obscurity in a circle of relatives of sharecroppers in Troy, Alabama, to countrywide prominence inside the civil rights movement. This “quietly charismatic, forever courtly, implacably serene” man become motivated by a fierce commitment to nonviolence and above all by using his loyal attachment to the imaginative and prescient he shared with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Of a “cherished community”—in Lewis’ words, “nothing less than the Christian concept of the kingdom of God on earth.”
As Meacham describes it, Lewis’ course to accomplishing that imaginative and prescient was marked by means of arrests (forty five in all); savage beatings, just like the one he received on the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama, in March 1965; and moments of profound frustration as he fought to triumph over the fierce opposition to his quest. But there have been also moments of triumph, now not least of all while he shared the stage with Dr. King at the August 1963 March on Washington and, as Meacham writes, “spoke more simply, but from the valley, a number of the people whose burdens he knew due to the fact they were his burdens, too.”
Meacham makes a persuasive case for his declare that “John Robert Lewis embodied the trends of a saint in the classical Christian feel of the term.” At a second whilst occasions have once again compelled Americans to confront the evils of racism, His Truth Is Marching On will inspire both courage and hope.