Where does Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) shop for a bespoke superhero costume? In his own closet, natch.
While making an appearance at Comic-Con International for his civil rights graphic novel “March” on Saturday, Lewis dressed as his 25-year-old self — khaki trench coat, black slacks and canvas knapsack. Lewis’s cosplay (or costume play in fan speak) was a re-creation of what he wore in 1965 while crossing the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Ala.
On that day 50 years ago, a watershed moment in the civil rights movement known as “Bloody Sunday,” Lewis, then chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, suffered a fractured skull after being beaten by Alabama state troopers.
“And I want young children to feel it. Almost taste it. To make it real,” Lewis told The Washington Post’s Comic Riffs when the first installment of “March,” written with longtime staffer Andrew Aydin and artist Nate Powell, was released. “It’s not just the words but the action and the drama and the movement that bring it alive.”
So on Saturday, among the Hans Solos and Wolverines at the San Diego convention center, the 75-year-old congressman led a group of dozens of small children throw the crowded hallways and into a book signing for the second installment of his trilogy, which is taught in San Diego schools.
“It’s important for all our young people to know what happened or how it happened so they, too, can bring about change using the philosophy of nonviolence,” Lewis told a local new station.