By Dr. Antonio L. Ellis
In just a few weeks after the Zimmerman v. Sanford Florida verdict, and during the week of the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington, Reverend Michael Brown and his guests were told that they could not be seated at the Wild Wings Café in North Charleston, South Carolina because a White lady said she felt threatened by their presence. Perhaps the customer thought this entire group “looked suspicious” therefore she voiced her discomfort to the restaurant management. As we commemorate this March on Washington, the dream of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. has been deferred once again. Dr. King dreamed for the day when everyone would not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.
To add insult to injury, the only course of action the restaurant manager took was to offer Reverend Michael Brown and his guests a free meal. Fortunately, Reverend Brown did not settle for a meal; however, he decided to stand for justice by exposing this story to thousands of people across the world. This story has been reported to notable persons such as Journalist Roland Martin (CNN contributor), Mr. Michael Baisden (nationally acclaimed author), Dr. Gloria Ladson-Billings (renowned scholar), Dr. Marc Lamont Hill (Black Enterprise T.V Show Host), Dr. Boyce Watkins (national author and professor), Mr. Jeff Johnson (Black Entertainment Television contributor), and many others.
The management of Wild Wings seemingly displayed an act of overt racism which is totally unacceptable. Thousands of people across America are rallying for the termination of the manager who displayed poor leadership and decision-making skills. This story is a testament that the struggle and the movement for racial equality are yet alive. Reverend Brown is to be applauded for addressing this tragic experience in a spirit peace and dignity, which was also displayed by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. They both agree that “injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere”.