COLUMBIA —Thirty members of the NAACP stood on the corner of Fourth Street and Broadway, chanting: "Fired up. Ready to go!"
Mary Ratliff, the president of the Columbia branch of the National Association of the Advancement of Colored People, and members from branches all over the state boarded a bus at the intersection this morning that will take them to Washington D.C.
There, they will join other branches from across the nation and more than 150 other organizations Saturday for The One Nation March, hosted by One Nation Working Together.
“We are marching for a dream deeply rooted in the American dream,” Anita Russell, president of the Kansas City branch of the NAACP, said. “We march for jobs, justice and education. We march for a nation in which each person who wants work can find a job that pays to support a family.”
The march, Russell said, will serve as a catalyst to get the public excited for the Nov. 2 election. The NAACP will participate in a march to the polls on election day.
The 59-passenger bus taking the group to D.C. began its route in Kansas City, also stopped in Sedalia, and will make one more stop in St. Louis to pick up more members.
“It gets more exciting as we go along, as more get on the bus,” said Russell.
Russell has been a member of the NAACP since 1990 and marched in Atlanta in 2005 in support of renewing the voting rights act.
“Now, we’re going just a little farther,” said Russell.