Wilcox County High School
is a small, rural school, located three hours south of Atlanta. Recently, in a school district that serves some 1,300 students in total. The high school has been in the news for it's continued tradition of holding segregated proms, and for the efforts of some of the local students to raise funds to hold the first officially integrated prom in the community's history
. Though, most students were welcome to the "black prom,"
the first officially integrated prom happened this past Saturday. So many donors came forward, from around the world, that the students say they have money left over to help local families in need
. Unfortunately, this doesn't mean an end to the community's history of segregated proms, as the "white prom" was still held, but a week earlier
in Fitzgerald, Georgia, less than 10 miles south of the Wilcox County border. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief
on Apr 29, 2013 -
"You, too, can get to the promised land. [...] Perhaps greater lies have been told in the past century, but they can be counted on one hand. Racial caste is alive and well in America." The New Jim Crow
by Michelle Alexander
posted by the young rope-rider
on Apr 15, 2012 -
On MLK Day, Some Thoughts on Segregated Schools, Arne Duncan, and President Obama
"American schools are more segregated by race and class today than they were on the day Martin Luther King, Jr. was killed, 43 years ago. The average white child in America attends a school that is 77 percent white, and where just 32 percent of the student body lives in poverty. The average black child attends a school that is 59 percent poor but only 29 percent white. The typical Latino kid is similarly segregated; his school is 57 percent poor and 27 percent white."
posted by Fizz
on Jan 17, 2011 -
Happy Birthday Dr. King. Today is Martin Luther King Day. He was born 80 years ago, on January 15th, 1929. He was assassinated on April 4, 1968, at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee. He was just thirty-nine years old.
Tomorrow, more than four decades after Dr. King’s death, Barack Obama will take his oath of office to become the 44th president of the United States and the first African American president in US history. The Reverend Joseph Lowery, a civil rights icon who co-founded the Southern Christian Leadership Conference with Dr, King, will deliver the benediction at the inauguration ceremony. Obama accepted the Democratic party nomination on the 45th anniversary of Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech, arguably his most famous address.
While Dr. King is primarily remembered as a civil rights leader, he also championed the cause of the poor and organized the Poor People"s Campaign to address issues of economic justice. Dr. King was also a fierce critic US foreign policy and the Vietnam War. [more inside]
posted by caddis
on Jan 19, 2009 -
Through a Lens Darkly
- on September 4, 1957, when 15-year-old Elizabeth Eckford tried to enter Little Rock Central High, she was blocked by the National Guard and surrounded by a screaming mob of 250: "Lynch her! Lynch her!" "No nigger bitch is going to get in our school! Get out of here!" "Go back to where you came from!" Looking for a friendly face, she turned to an old woman, who spat on her
. Dramatic news footage
. Ernest Green, another of the Little Rock 9 recalls
the first day of school. [more inside]
posted by madamjujujive
on Sep 25, 2007 -
Under the ole shade tree...
Welcome to Jena, LA -- mix high school segregation, racism, nooses, fights, ineffective school administration, attempted-murder charges, shotguns, and a town in upheaval--a "racial powder keg"
. Much more here,
including links to help.
posted by amberglow
on May 23, 2007 -
The Mississippi State Sovereignty Commission
was created in 1956 by the Mississippi Legislature in the wake of the Brown v. Board of Education
decision. The Commission's express purpose was to "do and perform any and all acts and things deemed necessary and proper to protect the sovereignty of the state of Mississippi, and her sister states." In other words, it was an official tax-funded agency to combat the activities of the Civil Rights Movement. Their records are now online
posted by marxchivist
on Dec 5, 2006 -
Survivor: Cook Islands'
20 castaways will be grouped by race, with competitors divided into four tribes consisting of whites, blacks, Asians and Hispanics. If your reaction is "oof," you are not alone
. But host Jeff Probst says
, "I found it to be one of the freshest ideas we’ve had going back to the beginning of this show."
posted by amro
on Aug 23, 2006 -
Founded in the core belief that segregation is, was and has always been wrong, this campaign is intended to make people stop, think and perhaps get a little uncomfortable in the process of realizing the modern day importance of Dr. King's life.
posted by bluedaniel
on Jan 16, 2006 -
Still Separate, Still Unequal:
America's Educational Apartheid, by Jonathon Kozol
, from the September issue of Harper's
. Even if you're familiar with a big-city public-school system , it's an eye-opener. (Also, if (like I might be on a worse day) you're miffed by yet another Harper's cover story FPP, what do you think about the posting site's Fair Use application? I've never seen that before. No more inside.)
posted by mrgrimm
on Sep 19, 2005 -
"Approximately 250,000 persons viewed and passed by the bier of little Emmett Till. All were shocked, some horrified and appalled. Many prayed, scores fainted and practically all, men, women and children wept". Chicago Defender, September 1, 1955.
Federal officials this morning erected a white tent over the grave of Emmett Till
, Ill., in preparation to exhume the body
to shed light on the Chicago teenager's death
50 years ago.
Till, 14 years old at the time, was killed in a hate crime
in Money, Miss., that sparked the Civil Rights movement
. (previous Emmett Till MeFi threads here
posted by matteo
on Jun 1, 2005 -
"Black Like me"
: the notion of "Race" is know known to be scientifically meaningless
, but now roll back the clock to 1959 : "...John Howard Griffin (1920-1980) was a true Renaissance man. Having fought in the French Resistance and been a solo observer on an island in the South Pacific during World War II, he became a critically-acclaimed novelist and essayist, a remarkable photographer and musicologist, and a dynamic lecturer and teacher. On October 28, 1959, after a decade of blindness and a remarkable and inexplicable recovery, John Howard Griffin dyed himself black and began an odyssey of discovery through the segregated American South. The result was Black Like Me, arguably the single most important documentation of 20th century American racism ever written....Because of Black Like Me, Griffin was personally vilified, hanged in effigy in his hometown, and threatened with death for the rest of his life."
posted by troutfishing
on Sep 19, 2004 -
Press Box Red
For 50 years, Lester Rodney
was a forgotten footnote in perhaps the most controversial
American sports story
of the 20th century: Jackie Robinson
and the breaking
's color barrier
. Now, the 93-year-old Rodney is getting his due. In the decade before Robinson debuted
with the Brooklyn Dodgers
, Rodney was the sports editor
of the Daily
Worker, a newspaper (the FBI files
on .pdf) better known as the house organ
of the American Communist Party
. With strident editorials and feature stories about what he dubbed "The Crime of the Big Leagues
," Rodney was an early, often lonely voice in the struggle to end segregation in baseball.
But Rodney's contribution was never acknowledged, because of that "sickening Red tinge
". Many baseball historians were staunchly anti-communist, and didn't want to acknowledge the contributions of the Communist Party. So Rodney's role (.pdf file)
was left out of the official story. With the publication of his biography
, Rodney's place in baseball's epochal story has introduced him to a new generation of admirers. "I wanted that ban to end because it was so unfair; I saw the tragedy of these great black ballplayers, like the catcher Josh Gibson
, who didn't get a chance to play. It's unimaginable today, but look at Barry Bonds: Imagine if he had been born earlier and been unable to play."
(login details for LATimes story in the main link: sparklebottom/sparklebottom)
posted by matteo
on Jul 12, 2004 -
Third World Transition Program.
It's not a relief effort for resettled refugees - it's Brown University's pre-orientation forum "primarily for students of color." Brown President Ruth Simmons will apparently order TWTP to desegregate,
but the organization will continue to invite only "students of color"
- apparently self-identified from application forms - to participate. According to one student, the admittance of whites to TWTP "would change the level of comfort that's established." Another argued that whites would "compromise the program's integrity and mission." "I can't help laughing when a white person tells me that they understand and experience racism," adds
a Brown Daily Herald columnist. But many TWTP alumni are also its harshest critics. "We were given advice on how to 'deal' with a white roommate," writes
one student. "It fostered an 'us vs. them' mentality with white students on campus and directly and indirectly encouraged minority students to seek out friendships with students of color before white students arrived on campus." Another
reports that him TWTP peers shunned him when he began reaching out to other campus groups because he "found people who I had more in common with than an ethnic background." When TWTP was founded 30 years ago, it certainly served a valuable purpose in a tumultuous and changing social environment. But how do mainstream folks wrest the debate from both the far left and far right, convince the organization that its harm outweighs its good, and urge it to reform itself from within and help unify rather than segregate the student body?
posted by PrinceValium
on Mar 18, 2004 -
Welcome to 2003.
A quiet Southern high school south of Atlanta once again holds seperate white and black proms. "I cried," said McCrary, who is black. "The black juniors said, 'Our prom is open to everyone. If you want to come, come.'"
posted by The Jesse Helms
on May 1, 2003 -
I stumbled across a fairly controversial opinion piece concerning racial integration
it's fairly mild compared to some of the writers
. Never the less, his observations on this subject seem to hold up under scrutiny. With few exceptions, whites and blacks seem to prefer their own company, and as evidenced by these
, even young urban professionals seem happiest among their own race.
posted by Beholder
on Jan 13, 2003 -
Southern public schools
are becoming segregated again, but not through governmental regulation this time, but through the free will of white teachers who are fleeing all black schools, and relaxed bussing laws that are no longer forcing mixed race students to intermingle. A disturbing step backwards, and one that doesn't trend better in the foreseeable future.
posted by jonson
on Jan 12, 2003 -