After all, the youngest of 12 children had answered a call from Martin Luther King, requesting that he travel to Alabama and help organize a voter-registration drive. From there, he was asked to join in the march across the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Ala., what became known as "Bloody Sunday," when some of Mr. Jackson's own blood would be spilled.
"If I were black with a 'D' behind my name, I'd probably be in every liberal newspaper on the front page the day President Bush appointed me," Mr. Jackson told the interviewer.
He then recalled the "powerful lesson" of leadership he learned while a freshman at historically black Lincoln University in Pennsylvania, when Bernard Lee, King's top aide, personally invited him to Alabama.
"I jumped at the chance," Mr. Jackson recalled last week. "And we marched to Selma. My life was forever changed on a Sunday morning as I stood, peacefully, with 600 other marchers on Pettus Bridge. More than 200 troopers met us on a day now known as Bloody Sunday. A man named Al Lingo ordered the troopers to release the dogs on us, and the beatings began.
"I was standing four rows from the front. I can still hear the N-word rolling from Al Lingo's lips. They used whips and nightsticks, tear gas, electric cattle prods and digs. More than 50 of us went down. One of the dogs tore into my flesh. I still have the scar."
Marc Morano, communications director for Sen. James M. Inhofe on the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, was leaving for the airport when Inside the Beltway called him on Friday.
Where was he going?
John McCaslin is a contributing columnist on Townhall.com and author of Inside The Beltway: Offbeat Stories, Scoops, and Shenanigans from around the Nation's Capital .
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