We can’t say it any better than the News-Journal’s lede editorial this morning. This is where you need to be today.
Details about participating are at Countdown to the March.
Stop the violence: Join March for a Culture of Peace
Saturday, more than 40 Delaware and regional faith and community groups plan to gather in a March for a Culture of Peace. It will culminate in a rally at a local park where leaders will issue calls to action. It’s part of a nationwide week of actions initiated by Campaign Nonviolence.
The 1-mile effort begins 3 p.m. at Brandywine Park, 18th and Washington streets, with quite a few familiar faces from area churches, synagogues and mosques and community groups vested in changing Wilmington’s current crime narrative. More and much smaller events are being staged at crime scenes by victims’ relatives and advocates, as crime continues to rise in the city.
And yet prior protests have done little to give urban communities like Wilmington any hope that the trend is on the decline. But please don’t yawn. Regardless of size, whether sporadically or thoughtfully calculated – these protests give witness to the fact that many city residents no longer accept the dangerous status quo as the new normal for Wilmington. And they care enough about the trend of shootings and killings and threat to their neighborhoods to provide a public face to their outrage.
Saturday’s gathering and similar anti-violence protests over the last several months are reactions to the deep destabilizing effect of gun-related violence – a national phenomena. And yet our political leaders who have the will to do something about it nationally are hamstrung by Washington and local partisan politics. That reality forces hard choices about competing fiscal priorities. As a result, voters are left with little hope that they can depend on elected leaders or the law to adequately address the nation’s crime problem.
However, the duty of living in a Democracy is that “we the people” not only advocate for change but participate in making it happen. This is the focus of today’s scheduled program after the march winds through affected city neighborhoods and ends in Price Run Park, 25th and Pine streets, about 5 p.m. It is there where something noble and bold about showing up anyway, about manning the plumb line of these protests, and providing witness to courage matters much, regardless of the numbers who gather.
Their public witness translates this message: Yes, crime will still linger, but so will its fervent enemies in our public protest marches, rallies and the relationships that develop around community building as a result. Today, as many Delawareans as possible who feel likewise should join their force. Because the absence of objectors to growing crime only contributes to its growing and continued life cycle.