WATCH: President Biden Helps Lead the Bridge Crossing Reenactment in Selma
Here is a look at President Biden and others helping to lead the reenactment of the crossing of the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma on Sunday.
Biden arrived in Selma for the annual Bridge Crossing Jubilee, which remembers the civil rights struggles in Alabama during the 1960s. On March 7, 1965, about 600 marchers crossed the bridge in their attempt to walk to Montgomery to protest the lack of equal voting rights. When they crossed the bridge, they were met by Alabama State Troopers, some of whom beat the marchers severely. That day became known as Bloody Sunday.
A second attempt was made on what became known as “Turnaround Tuesday” when the marchers went onto the bridge but after prayer, returned into the city for various reasons, including security. Finally, the third attempt later that month that included thousands of people made it to the Alabama Capitol in Montgomery.
That was the year that the Voting Rights Act of 1965 was passed by Congress and signed by President Lyndon B. Johnson. That action happened after people across the country had witnessed in horror what had happened on Bloody Sunday.
Some of the 1965 marchers still make the annual crossing over the bridge. Over the years, presidents, presidential candidates, other political leaders, church officials and celebrities have made trips to Selma to learn more about the Civil Rights Movement and the efforts that continue today.