A candlelight vigil, in remembrance of Keith Scott and Justin Carr, was held Sept. 28.
The event was held in the Student Activity Center where posters were on display titled, “I Do This For…” “Candle Dedication” and “White Light Vigil” along with eight candles which were later lit in honor of the recent victims of police brutality. Building Better Brothers (B3) hosted the event to “promote fellowship among everyone.”
Event Coordinator Spencer Blackwell stated the purpose of the vigil is to “spread more love and peace in the community.”Many students and faculty attended the event and listened to the variety of guest speakers. Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs Dr. Arthur R. Jackson spoke on the current divide in the United States titling it “Two Americas.”
He stated the divide is between the northern states and southern states, in which the northern states have made more progress than the southern states when addressing racial issues. Jackson urged the audience to continue to peacefully fight for justice. “[Each new obstacle] gives chance for constructive not destructive change,” said Jackson.
Dean of Students Dr. Reid Davis spoke words of encouragement and support through tearful eyes stating that she has never been more proud of students than she has been this week. She concluded her speech with the quote, “let your revolution start with your education.”
UNC Charlotte’s gospel choir, Voices of Eden sang “From the Inside of Me” and “Lean on Me” throughout the vigil. Their harmonious strains tugged at the hearts of all those in attendance. Their songs provided inspiration and fellowship among everyone in the room.
Following Voices of Eden, were speakers like President of the UNC Charlotte National Association for the Advancement of Colored People Deandre R Collins and Brent Campbell, a campus minister.
Campbell provided biblical words of inspiration with the message that the recent events are not problems between races, rather it is between “those who value life and those that don’t,” said Campbell.
He spoke of how the police system is operational. The people have to change in order for the brutality to stop. Blackwell stated that he was very proud of the assembly.
“The Brothers of B3 want everyone to know that even though there is some fear of being brutalized by police officers during an encounter, we have never felt more powerful and confident in being black men in America. We will continue to stand united and fight for the cause,” said Blackwell.