Unity in the Community

One of my favorite things about our office is the location; we’re in the middle of a very diverse area. I often find myself wandering to the local grocery store, bakery or restaurants to sample amazing authentic flavors. Today was a great opportunity for a cultural immersion of another kind - a chance to witness neighbors coming together in unity for the community.

The 2019 César E. Chávez Social Justice March & Community Gathering took place on Grandville Avenue today as a march from Cook Library to The Potter’s House Chapel. The commemorative walk was planned in remembrance of César Chávez’ 92nd birthday this month.

César E. Chávez was a common man with an extraordinary vision to unite humankind and spread equality, justice and dignity for all. The Committee to Honor César E. Chávez organized today’s events and were encouraging participants to join, walking arm in arm commemorating César’s vision to engage all - particularly the youth - to carry on his values and timeless vision for a better world. César Chávez was also credited with popularizing the slogan Sí, se puede" (Spanish for "Yes, one can" or, roughly, "Yes, it can be done" and the community carried that message on their signs still today.

Personally, I loved seeing the bright flags and homemade signs from people of all ages and races, as well as local leadership from all over Grand Rapids in attendance. It was such a powerful reminder of bright spots in dark times. People coming together is what can make this country great, equal people - putting agendas and affiliations aside and coming together for a common cause. Call it a march, call it a rally - I found it inspirational and for today it gave me hope that “Yes, it can be done.'“

Damion Van SlykeComment