Students march to remember civil rights struggles

    March 05, 2012

    Civil Rights MarchAfter a spring break trip took her to historic sites of the civil rights movement, Wesley Staedt knew she wanted to bring the experience to her peers at UW-Whitewater.

    Staedt, a senior history major, will lead a march from downtown Whitewater to campus, commemorating civil rights struggles and honoring those who fought for equality.

    "We want to honor people who have been oppressed and fought for equal treatment," Staedt said. "This program is a thank-you to them and a reminder to keep them in our minds."

    The march begins at 1:15 p.m. Wednesday, March 7, at the Prairie Tillers mural on West Center Street in downtown Whitewater. Everyone is welcome to participate.

    University and city officials will offer brief remarks before the march will proceed to Wyman Mall on the UW-Whitewater campus. The Gospel Choir will lead the group in songs from the civil rights movement of the 1960s.

    The march will end at the James R. Connor University Center Hamilton Room at 2 p.m., where a program will feature poster and digital presentations on nearly a dozen civil rights issues.

    "The civil rights struggle is more than just an African-American movement," Staedt said. "So many other groups, including women, Native American, Chicano, Hmong, and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender groups have all experienced discrimination."

    Laptop computers will play video stories created by students who attended the 2011 spring break civil rights trip, which included stops at museums and landmarks in Kentucky, Georgia, Alabama and Tennessee. Old Main Lane, an art gallery in the University Center, will display photos of the trip.

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