After general convention, still pondering WHAT WOULD JONATHAN DO? IN MEMORY OF PAMELA SUE RUSH

In late June, Rush was hospitalized in Selma with a diagnosis of COVID-19. Flowers said there were multiple systemic factors that contributed to Rush’s death. This virus, like a heat-seeking missile, zeroed in on Pam. The intersections of poverty, environmental injustice, climate change and racial and health disparities placed multiple targets on her back,” Flowers said.

When she wasn’t fighting for those inflicted with injustices, Rush was first and foremost a mother who loved her children. Those who knew her expressed an admiration for her strength, honesty and strong moral code.Rush expressed in her interview with Southerly how she could not allow the shame she felt about her circumstances stop her from doing what was right. “I’m real ashamed about it, but I had to come out of my shame,” she said. “God gave me strength.”




“You can go to Wilcox County, and you find exactly the same situation, but really nothing happening to solve the problem,” University of Alabama professor Mark Elliott said. “It’s kind of ironic that Lowndes County is the one that has the DOJ action when you can go to any other Black Belt county and find almost nothing being done to solve the problem in very similar conditions.”


In Alabama, not having a functioning septic system is a criminal misdemeanor. Residents can be fined as much as five hundred dollars per citation, evicted, and even arrested.

Rush’s sister Viola was once arrested for a sewage violation. But installing a new system can cost as much as twenty thousand dollars, which is more than the average person in Lowndes County makes in a year.

Instead, Rush, like her neighbors, used a pipe to empty waste into the grass outside—a practice, called straight-piping, that is not uncommon in much of rural America. (At least one in five homes in the U.S. is not on a municipal sewer line.)

Floods carry sewage across people’s lawns and into their living areas, bringing with it the risk of viruses, bacteria, and parasites that thrive in feces.

Studies have found E. coli and fecal coliform throughout the Black Belt, in wells and in public waters.

A United Nations rapporteur on extreme poverty, visiting in 2017, said that the sewage problem was unlike anything else he had encountered in the developed world. “This is not a sight that one normally sees,” he said.





i asked in August 2020 what could we do to help the Rushes?

i’m asking in August 2022 what else can we do other than march to honor Jonathan. the other Martyrs. Pam? i won’t even talk about the myriad of 2022 justice challenges that Jonathan would have championed. e,g., SCOTUS! i’ll let Ruby talk about AI and the digital divide…

amen so BE it


fri aug 5 2022 tues july 19 2022 mon july 4 2022 REmbr… G is, as G can only BE. GOOD

If I didn’t define myself, I’d be crunched into other people’s fantasies for me and eaten alive. audre lorde