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Are you an agent for change?

“Nonviolence is a powerful and just weapon, which cuts without wounding and ennobles the man who wields it. It is a sword that heals.”

The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. spoke those words more than a half-century ago and they ring as true as ever today.

On May 25, George Floyd died after being detained by police officers from the Minneapolis Police Department.

Since then, Floyd’s death has prompted several peaceful, and some violent, protests around the country and even the world.

This weekend locals gathered on the Court Square to peacefully protest racial inequality and bring awareness to issues in our nation, state and community.

Kudos to those who organized the gathering and those who participated in Saturday’s event; it’s a step forward.

First, we are proud of our community for stepping forward and talking about important issues such as racial inequality and the injustices that come from it. One of the great things about our community is when someone needs something, we generally work together to help them. This is no different.

It’s often easy to overlook issues that may not directly affect you, but we can all stand to look within ourselves to ensure we are all walking in love. Our community prides itself on being a Christian community and therefore, walking in love for our fellow Covington Countians no matter race, gender, age, or any other demographic is part of that walk.

Secondly, we applaud those who shared their stories and those who are making an effort to better understand our neighbors who have dealt with unfair treatment that many of us will never have to deal with. Reliving hurt is never easy, so we know sharing your stories may have been difficult to do.

Thirdly, it is a great representation of the community that locals were able to gather and have dialogue about such an important issue without violence, rioting, and looting.

But, we can’t stop there.

We must continue the dialogue.

We must continue to make changes to fight racism.

We must make an ample effort to listen and understand our neighbors who deal with racism every day.

We must each do our part to ensure that people who live in our community are free from racism.

We mustn’t simply buy into the lie that because we don’t see it or that we haven’t experienced it, it doesn’t happen.

We’ve all heard the old adage that we should walk a mile in someone else’s shoes before we judge.

That is particularly true in this instance.

We must each do our part.

Walk in love, educate our children and break down barriers – whatever it takes.

The Rev. Daryl Calloway from First Baptist Church Whatley Street said on Saturday,  “With time and the ability to hold it together, not becoming discouraged, continuing to press forward, by us looking at the man and the woman in the mirror, a change will come. And we must be the agent for change.” 

We humbly ask each of you to ask yourself this question: What are you doing to be an agent for change?