Tuesday, December 11, 2018

first 18 minutes

If you watch the first 18 minutes of last night's Waterloo, IA, City Council Meeting, you will be able to hear the proclamation I shared yesterday and you will see a 6 minute video of our Vision Trip to the South last month. 

Monday, December 10, 2018

human rights day december 10

I had the pleasure of joining others at the Waterloo City Council Meeting tonight to stand with Mayor Hart as he read this Human Rights Proclamation over our community:

City of Waterloo, Iowa

On December 10, 1948, nations from six continents came together to adopt the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.  This extraordinary document affirmed that every individual is born equal with inalienable rights, and it is the responsibility of governments to uphold these rights.  In more than 430 translations, the Declaration recognizes the inherent dignity and worth of all people and supports their right to chart their own destinies.  On the anniversary of this human rights milestone, we join with all those who are willing to strive for a brighter future, and together, we continue our work to build the world our children deserve; and
We want our children to lead healthy lives and pursue an education without fear, and when citizens are empowered to pursue their full measure of happiness without restraint, they help ensure that economies grow, stability and prosperity spread, and communities flourish.  Protecting human rights everywhere extends the promise of democracy and bolsters the values that serve as a basis for peace in our world; and
It is our obligation as free people to stand with courageous individuals who raise their voices to demand universal rights.  Under extremely difficult circumstances – and often at grave personal risk – brave human rights defenders and civil society activists throughout the Cedar Valley are working to actualize the rights and freedoms that are the birthright of all humankind.  We will continue to support all those who champion these fundamental principles, and we will never stop speaking out for the human rights of all individuals, at home and abroad.  It is part of who we are as a people and what we stand for as a Cedar Valley United; and
We honor those by continually working to protect the personal dignity of all Waterloo citizens regardless of race, gender, religion or non-religion, ethnic background, sexual orientation, national origin or ability and to ensure social, political and economic freedoms and opportunities for all;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Mayor Quentin Hart, do hereby proclaim Monday, December 10, 2018, the official recognition of International Human Rights Day Celebration in Waterloo, and the official kick-off of a city-wide “2019 Human Rights Corridor of Activity.” This “Corridor of Activity” features round table discussions, theatrical productions, community book-reads, the inimitable  Waterloo Freedom Bus Tour, and celebrates 51 years since the assassination of the beloved Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., whose servant leadership led to the creation of civil and human rights organizations throughout the nation, including Waterloo Commission on Human Rights.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the official seal of the City of Waterloo to be affixed this 10th day of December 2018.

Saturday, December 1, 2018

those who have gone before

It was on this date 63 years ago.  December 1,1955.  Rosa Parks refused to move to the back of a bus.  Read her story here.

I was in Memphis at the Civil Rights Museum a few weeks ago with my neighbor, Willie Mae Wright, a Civil Rights hero in her own right.  Willie Mae told me that she always sits at the front of the bus. 

In her own words, "Ever since Rosa Parks, I always sit in the front of the bus.  I just can't bring myself to go to the back.  And when I vote, I never use an absentee ballot.  I always go to polling place to vote after so many have given so much for the right to vote."