Today marks the 50th anniversary of the civil rights march — and the accompanying, nationally televised police brutality — in Selma, Alabama.

The jaded part of me wonders, would the President have given that speech on that bridge if the recent Hollywood production hadn’t brought so much attention to this particular anniversary?

The optimistic part of me believes that he — our first black president, who during his tenure has had to witness a roll call of injustices that only begins with names like Oscar Grant, Trayvon Martin, and Mike Brown — would have.

We have come a long way, and we have a long way to go.  I hope you’ll watch the speech here, and think with me about where that bridge can lead us.