In honor of Black History Month USC students and staff traveled to Topeka Kansas to tour the State Capital, the Historic Ritchie House, and visit the Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Site. This was the first time that our students and two of our Indigenous Leaders had ever visited the State Capital Building!
Our focus on this trip was to give students a broader understanding of their civic responsibility to “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.” (Proverbs 31:8-9) . Students learned of the steadfast determination of both Whites and Blacks as they stood against injustice and fought for equal rights.
Our individual focus was on Thurgood Marshall (1908-1993), lead counsel on the Brown v. Board of Education Case (1954), and first Black Supreme Court Justice (1967-1991 – He was replaced by Justice Clarence Thomas, also African American).
The Bible verses we emphasized while on the trip were:
- Proverbs 31:8-9, Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.
- Psalm 82:3-4, Defend the cause of the weak and fatherless; maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed. Rescue the weak and needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked.
Our mission is to develop socially responsible Christian leaders – Helping our students understand their responsibility to defend the cause of the weak is part of their overall leadership development.