Monday, January 19, 2009

Lift ev'ry voice . . .

I was back in the Bahamas yesterday . . . not physically, mind you. I'm still trying to rest up. But I was there via the radio airwaves. I, along with a few of my other seminary friends, Michael Hunt and Quentin Samuels and some Bahamian Morehouse students and a Spellman sister got a chance to be a part of the live radio show: The Audacity to Hope: Do Dreams Really Come True? The show was a part of the Matters of the Heart radio program, my new friend Kirk Johnson broadcasts internationally from the Bahamas. This past weekend, however, he took the 2-hour show on the road and headed straight here to Atlanta to do the broadcast live from the place he felt the dreams we're now realizing in President Obama's election began.

Kirk and I met when I was at the zns station,, finishing up a radio interview two weeks ago. Once he realized Michael and I were from Atlanta, he shared how he wanted us to be a part of his broadcast and invited us to bring others along.

So there we were sitting in the Martin Luther King Jr. International Chapel on Morehouse's campus, surrounded by the thousands of photos of the Great Dr. King, Jr. and glimpses of the civil rights movement expounding on how one takes their dream from just the "concept" stage to reality. I was honored to be there, be a part of the conversation. I felt particularly esteemed to be in the company of these young black men who spoke their convictions and shared their insights of what is now being demanded of them in this moment and time in history. There were only two of us women at the table. At first I wondered if Kirk failed to find others. But as I sat there, it quickly became apparent that that time on the airwaves was really moreso about the men. It was their time to speak.

We women have always shared. Our men, more specifically, the collective voices of our black men, have not always been afforded that opportunity nor have they always taken advantage of it when presented. And Kirk's show was their time to be at the table and share their knowledge and relish in the fact that they do have something to say and it's not only their responsibility to share, but their responsibility to encourage their other brethren to do the same. Many others are waiting to hear what they have to say.

And on Sunday, a portion of the world was listening, including me. And I couldn't have been happier and more thrilled to have a front row seat.

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