Skip to main content

Getman laments passing of Congressman John Lewis

Voice of our Readers

To the Editor:
I greet you with lament from the nation’s capital. Many of you have read in my favorite weekly paper, or heard my messages in church, about our need as a country to treat each other with greater compassionate listening and love during these challenging times.
COVID-19 and the events in Minneapolis serve to redouble our appeals to build bridges across all our fields of disagreement … personal, political and social.
And now with our losses mounting and the temperature rising, it is good to repeat the appropriate Proverbs: “It is to a man’s/woman’s honor to avoid strife, but every fool is quick to quarrel … the tongue has power of life and death” (19-20).
It was to my everlasting gratitude to have encountered one who practiced that principle to his dying breath on July 17, Congressman John Lewis of Georgia.
He was a protégé of Martin Luther King and he nearly died from a beating on the Pettis Bridge in Selma while marching with Dr. King for Blacks’ – indeed, all poor peoples’ – voting rights. 
Columnist Colbert King penned this in the Washington Post: “He never swerved from his credo that ‘people of all faiths, and no faiths, and all backgrounds, creeds, and colors’ must band together, ‘to fight for equality and justice in a peaceful, orderly, nonviolent fashion.’ It was a statement he repeated as recently as a few weeks ago following the police killings and unrest in his Atlanta hometown and across the nation. ‘I see you, and I hear you. I know your pain, your rage, your sense of despair and hopelessness.’”
Please know that I hear you in Luverne, and indeed the state. You are in my prayers and intentions during this troubled time. I, as one who counts myself a “child of Rock County,” urge you to practice your faith principles in treatment of one another as you make political social justice decisions that affect us all in the days ahead.
May you use these principles as you make your choices as we are seeking to do here in Washington, D.C.
Please stay safe and healthy, spiritually and physically, in the days ahead.
Tom Getman
Washington, D.C.
(former Luverne resident)

You must log in to continue reading. Log in or subscribe today.