Former Tuscaloosa Area Gang Members Plan Men’s Unity Gathering
It is said that when you know better, you do better. Unfortunately, many people go down the wrong path and endure hardships before they learn various methods of obtaining peace and sometimes wealth. Luckily, in Tuscaloosa such individuals are putting their experiences to use by working to quell tensions between rival groups and unify their communities.
Following a string of shootings, a group of men under the umbrella "Us First, We One," have organized a coming together on September 5 at Tiger Baseball Field in Northport to work towards stopping the violence in the Black community.
The group's organizers are former gang members who are all convicted felons and include individuals such as Paul Davis, Leon Tucker, Keondrae Barnes, Lawrence Holliday, Aubrey Travis, and Timothy Robinson.
They will each reach out to young men within their spheres of influence from each side of town with a goal of reaching 300 men in the Tuscaloosa area. No women will be allowed at this gathering.
The event will consist of motivational speakers, spoken word performances, the embracing of peace, prayer, and forgiveness... All necessary to bring peace and an end to violence.
The men will also break bread together in fellowship while practicing social distancing as much as possible. Organizers say no guns, weapons, or violence will tolerated as security will be strictly enforced. Neither will drugs or alcohol be permitted, as only clear heads can make conscious decisions.
When asked if they would be accepting donations, it was expressed that food, fruit, drinks, water, and paper goods like plates, napkins, etc. would be accepted, but no monetary gifts.
This is but the first of such gatherings. Following the September event will be a movement in October. They're calling it "Walk It Out," where they will walk from one side of town to other side, through different neighborhoods as a sign of unity and to restore pride in the community.
All men who would like to offer their support should contact one of the organizers.
Tuscaloosa Peaceful Racial Justice Rally