City comes together as Klan rallies

Mai Hoang

Over 1,000 people, including Western students, faculty and staff members, gathered Saturday at Girls Inc. for Bowling Green’s first Community Unity Day.

A committee of people representing city organizations organized the event to counteract the Ku Klux Klan rally that was held at the same time.

“We’ve taken a negative activity and turned it into a very positive activity,” said Saundra Ardrey, head of Western’s government department and a member of the Unity Day Celebration Committee. “(We wanted) to do something to show that this community was bigger than hate.”

Those who attended the event listened to music from different cultures, made patches for a “unity quilt,” and participated in a panel discussion about reaching racial unity.

Unity Day participants were also invited to sign the Birmingham Pledge, where signers declared they believe in the dignity and respect of all people and were committed to eliminate racial prejudice.

By the end of the celebration, about 1,100 people signed the pledge, according to Abraham Williams, director of the Housing Authority of Bowling Green and a Unity Day committee member.

They hope to have 10,000 community members sign the pledge by this time next year, Williams said.

A more complete story will be on and the College Heights Herald on Thursday Sept. 5.