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Civil Rights Leader Rep. Lewis Speaks To San Diego Students, Discusses Border Wall Funding

Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) speaks with students and administrators at Morse High ...

Credit: Matt Hoffman/KPBS

Above: Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) speaks with students and administrators at Morse High School in San Diego, Sept. 21, 2018.

Rep. John Lewis, D-Georgia, told students at San Diego's Morse High School about his fight for civil rights including getting arrested in the 1960s. Lewis told students they have the power to change the world and to never give up — even when life gets tough.

"You must be hopeful," Lewis said after the event. "You must be optimistic, you must never get lost in a sea of despair. And it’s going to work out, it’s all going to workout."

Lewis showed students his new book, "March: Book One." The book co-authored by Lewis dives into his fight against segregation and is told using comic book-style writing and imagery.

During his talk, Lewis also condemned recent migrant family separations at the border. Later, Lewis said he felt the students were receptive toward his comments.

This week President Donald Trump took to Twitter to ask, "Where is the money for border security and the wall in this ridiculous spending bill ..." Lewis said the U.S. does not need to build walls, instead, it needs to build bridges.

"Who are we trying to keep out, and who are we trying to keep in? So I’m not for spending one dime, not one penny on the wall," Lewis said.

RELATED: Rep. Duncan Hunter, Wife Plead Not Guilty To Campaign Finance Corruption Charges

Lewis was also asked about Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Alpine, who is currently facing allegations of illegally spending more than $250,000 in campaign funds. Hunter's wife and former campaign manager were also named in the allegations. As for commenting on the charges, Lewis said voters will have a decision to make in November.

Lewis was in San Diego for a KPBS One Book One San Diego event in partnership with city and county libraries.

Rep. John Lewis, D-Georgia, was at Morse High School Friday talking with students about his new book and answering questions about the border wall and an indicted San Diego politician.

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