Last Saturday, many of us watched as two people from completely different backgrounds brought their worlds together. The marriage of British royalty and African American heritage—and all the promise held therein—was as beautiful as it was uplifting. The wall surrounding the ruling class had been breached. The gates were thrown open to welcome others who had for too long been kept out. And call me a hopeless romantic (Bill certainly does), but there is nothing quite so hopeful as witnessing people pledge to alter all they’ve ever known for each other, for all the right and most righteous reasons.
While this was transpiring in England, a world away in Montgomery, people gathered on that same day for a very different event. At the meeting of Joe Reed’s Alabama Democratic Caucus, a wall built long ago to shield power was once again protected. The Gatekeeper, still alone on his watch, chose who would be allowed in. And who would remain out. This is terribly concerning. I fear that the ruling class in Alabama is too firmly entrenched. And that it has been for so long, that we’ve forgotten how things, especially DEMOCRATIC things, are really supposed to work. I left feeling saddened for our state. But also doubling my resolve to do something about it. My prayer is that someday soon, Alabama Democrats will be inspired to let the old ways pass to make way for a new, more inclusive approach. Where other voices will be heard. And where a new generation of Alabama leaders, still waiting outside that wall, will be emboldened to take their rightful place. And give us all good reasons to celebrate.