I’m very glad to see this (see video, below):
“The city of Richmond will honor the tennis Legend with the re-naming of the Boulevard to the Arthur Ashe Boulevard on Saturday, June 22.The Virginia Museum of History & Culture (VMHC), in partnership with the City of Richmond, Arthur Ashe Boulevard Initiative, and the Commonwealth of Virginia, will co-host the official dedication ceremony, Virginia Museum of History and Culture.”
I’m also very glad to see the great American hero Rep. John Lewis speaking at this event, along with Sen. Tim Kaine, Rep. Donald McEachin, Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney, etc. As Rep. Lewis said:
“When we came over the ocean 400 years ago to this land, we learned to pick cotton…Sometimes we were beaten and left for dead. But we never gave up, we never gave in, we never lost hope, we kept the faith and we kept our eyes on the prize…And I know there are some people in America today are saying, nothing has changed. But let me tell you, we live in a different America…We no longer have to count the number of jellybeans in a jar…because somebody, somewhere, and sometime gave a little blood…We must turn out and vote like we never, ever voted before. Our democracy is in trouble. Deep trouble. We must save our democracy and save our country. We can do it. We must do it…It’s time for us to get in trouble again – good trouble, necessary trouble. My philosophy is very simple: when you see something that is not right, not fair, not just – say something! do something! You cannot afford to be silent…How can we be silent when our government…is taking little babies from their mothers and their fathers and putting them in cages?…I’m sick and tired…of what is happening on so many levels in our government…I think it’s time for us to get in the way, to get in trouble…We’ve got to stop the madness. We should have the right to be safe at school, to be safe in school…We don’t need all of these guns. We must stop the killing and put an end to the violence…Never ever give up. Never ever get lost in a sea of despair. Keep the faith. Keep your eyes on the prize…Be prepared to fight the good fight…We are one people…we all live in the same house…and we must believe in the way of peace, in the way of love, in the philosophy and discipline of non-violence…We’ve come too far and we’re not going back.”
Great words from this great man, who also talked briefly about his “good friend” Arthur Ashe, about Ashe’s contributions, and about how glad he was that Richmond changed the name Boulevard to “Arthur Ashe Boulevard.” As this NY Times essay by Kurt Streeter put it, “When new street signs are unveiled on Saturday, it will become Arthur Ashe Boulevard. It will slice across Monument Avenue, known for its outsized statues of Confederate generals, at the very intersection where I was staring into the face of Stonewall Jackson.”
P.S. Hate to end on a sour note, but what on earth was Dominion Energy’s Tom Farrell doing at this ceremony? Very jarring and discordant, IMHO.