Once upon a time when a man chose to defend the immortal virtues of the universal brotherliness of humanity, he was hunted and gunned down but left an indelible wound in the heart of racism. Though buried with military honours since he was a veteran, it was the honorable life of equality of all men that endeared him to posterity’s memory.
It was Medgar who helped organize the Regional Council of Negro Leadership (RCNL) boycott against service stations when they denied blacks the use of restrooms. His main passion was to see the black community accord equal access and this hew greatly achieved though the desegregating colleges such as University of Mississippi.
His undaunted vocal stance against racial injustice and call for social accountability made him a true force to reckon with. But when a man rides on the wings of social truth and justice he has nothing to fear excerpt to keep the fire in his bones until the victory is won. He was not the kind who will sit indifferent to see wrong triumph when the weapons of right still remained potent after all.
He lived for this conviction that “the gifts of God . . . should be enjoyed by all citizens in Mississippi….”
But as fate will have it the assasins’s pistol found his back on June 12th 1963 as he pulled the drive way to go home. But did that really matter to him, not at all. Evers was ready to die a martyr for what he believed in after all he once prophesied “”I’m looking to be shot any time I step out of my car”, prophetic indeed and boldly he took the blow of death undaunted because as he again noted “You can kill a man but you can’t kill an idea”, and it was the seed of the idea of the equality of all men that he came to sow, water and prune in his lifetime.
It is particular with cowards when they cannot stand the convicting power of the villain’s gospel to assassinate him but alas they forget that what they thought for weevil late turned to awaken the consciousness of the collective whole. Medgar was assassinated but his idea lived on beyond the boundaries of time.
Today, the Medgar Evers college stands in Brooklyn New York and the Jackson Evers International airport in his honour by the Jackson city council. Men like Medgar are the true heroes of our society, laying down their personal interests for the social good and this generation will do well to learn of him as we meet men of all race everywhere.