“I am somebody. Respect me. Protect me. Don’t neglect me. Keep hope alive.”
These words echoed through the halls and classrooms of Cedar Grove High School as civil rights icon Jesse Jackson spoke to students during an assembly at the school on Oct. 10.
Jackson spoke to students about the importance of having one’s voice heard. Specifically, Jackson challenged students to use their voices at the polls come November 2018.
“An African-American woman is running for governor for the first time in Georgia,” Jackson said. “Not long ago, when Dr. King was alive, we didn’t have the right to vote. Those of you who are old enough to vote, you can register today. For those of you who aren’t old enough, talk to your parents and friends about voting. We have to do something to make it happen.”
Jackson completed his talk by challenging students to be, act on, and put in action the change they want to see in their own communities and the world at large. Jackson had students hear and repeat mantras for empowerment:
“Strong minds make strong change. I will not let this go. I am a man. I am a woman. I must be respected. I must do my best.”
“Reverend Jackson is here for a very special reason,” said Cedar Grove principal Shelton Bernard.
Jackson’s visit was part of Cedar Grove High’s homecoming celebration, which also included recognition of the school’s fall 2018 sports teams, homecoming court, and a school spirit celebration.
Throughout the week of Oct. 1, students celebrated a “Fashion Flare” day, a “Bohemian Free 2 Be Me” day, as well as a “Blue on Blue Pride” spirit day.
Cedar Grove High School’s homecoming football game took place on Oct. 5 against Towers High School.