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Monthly Archives: September 2013

Racism, Conservatism, Slavery, and the South

A long term criticism of the Congressional Black Caucus is that they have a seeming inability to move past the 60’s Civil Rights struggle. Since many of their districts exist because of racial gerrymandering by Republicans to produce reliably white, Republican districts by concentrating black and Minority voters – about half of the districts held by black Congressmen are in the South. The reverse Great Migration of black folks back to the South has resulted in the majority of black folks in the United States being located in the region.

African-American Population Percentage by County US in 2000 Census

Growing up and living in an extremely diverse region, Northern Virginia – where black professionals are common, leads to a view of the status of race relations, and the relationships between races is decidedly different from that of folks from the Deep-South. Folks from the Deep-South are more likely to see racism as a major issue. The flip answer has been that such belief is based on historical experience and not modern.

Turns out the flip answer, as usual… is wrong.

Former Slavery Strongholds Harbor Majority Of Nation’s Racists, Study Shows  – What they found: That a “slavery effect” persists among white Southerners who currently live in the Cotton Belt where slavery and the plantation economy thrived from the late 18th century into the 20th century. Residents of those counties are much more likely today to express more negative attitudes toward blacks than their fellow Southerners who live in nearby areas that had few slaves; are more likely to identify as Republican; and are more likely to express opposition to policies like affirmative action, the study authors concluded.

Conservatism is racism.

Slaves were concentrated in counties where cotton thrived, as shown in the above map based on the 1860 census. White Southerners in these same areas today express more racial resentment and are more likely to be Republican and oppose affirmative action, than other Southerners.

Legacy of Slavery Still Fuels Anti-Black Attitudes in the Deep South

Although slavery was abolished 150 years ago, its political legacy is alive and well, according to researchers who performed a new county-by-county analysis of census data and opinion polls of more than 39,000 southern whites.

The team of political scientists found that white Southerners who live today in the Cotton Belt where slavery and the plantation economy dominated are much more likely to express more negative attitudes toward blacks than their fellow Southerners who live in nearby areas that had few slaves. Residents of these former slavery strongholds are also more likely to identify as Republican and to express opposition to race-related policies such as affirmative action.

Conducted by Avidit AcharyaMatthew Blackwell, and Maya Sen from the University of Rochester, the research is believed to be the first to demonstrate quantitatively the lasting effects of slavery on contemporary political attitudes in the American South. The findings hold even when other dynamics often associated with racial animosity are factored in, such as present day concentrations of African Americans in an area, or whether an area is urban or rural.

“Slavery does not explain all forms of current day racism,” says Acharya. “But the data clearly demonstrates that the legacy of the plantation economy and its reliance on the forced labor of African Americans continues to exacerbate racial bias in the Deep South.”

The findings are reported in a working paper that will be presented for the first time at the Politics of Race, Immigration, and Ethnicity Consortium at the University of California at Riverside on Sept. 27.

The study looked at data from 93 percent of the 1,344 Southern counties in the Cotton Belt—the crescent-shaped band where plantations flourished from the late 18th century into the 20th century. The researchers found that a 20 percent increase in the percentage of slaves in a county’s pre-Civil War population is associated with a 3 percent decrease in whites who identify as Democrats today and a 2.4 percent decrease in the number of whites who support affirmative action.

The “slavery effect” accounts for an up to 15 percentage point difference in party affiliation today; about 30 percent of whites in former slave plantation regions report being Democrats, compared to 40 to 45 percent white Democrats in counties that had less than 3 percent slaves, according to the authors. Despite the region’s similarity in culture and its shared history of legalized slavery and Jim Crow laws, “the South is not monolithic,” says Blackwell.

Their analysis shows that without slavery, the South today might look fairly similar politically to the North. The authors compared counties in the South in which slaves were rare—less than 3 percent of the population—with counties in the North that were matched by geography, farm value per capita, and total county population. The result? There is little difference in political views today among residents in the two regions.

“In political circles, the South’s political conservatism is often credited to ‘Southern exceptionalism,'” says Blackwell. “But the data shows that such modern-day political differences primarily rise from the historical presence of many slaves.”

But how is it possible that an institution so long outlawed continues to influence views in the 21st century? The authors point to both economic and cultural explanations. Although slavery was banned, the economic incentives to exploit former slaves persisted well into the 20th century. “Before mechanization, cotton was not really economically viable without massive amounts of cheap labor,” explains Sen. After the Civil War, southern landowners resorted to racial violence and Jim Crow laws to coerce black field hands, depress wages, and tie tenant farmer to plantations.

“Whereas slavery only required a majority of (powerful) whites in the state to support it, widespread repression and political violence required the support and involvement of entire communities,” the authors write.

Again comparing the county-by-county data, the researchers found evidence of the relationship between racial violence and economics in the historical record of lynchings. Between 1882 and 1930, lynching rates were not uniform across the South, but instead were highest where cotton was king; a 10 percent increase in a county’s slave population in 1860 was associated with a rise of 1.86 lynchings per 100,000 blacks. “For the average Southern county, this would represent a 20 percent increase in the rate of lynchings during this time period,” says Blackwell.

By the time economic incentives to coerce black labor subsided with the introduction of machinery to harvest cotton in the 1930s, anti-black sentiment was culturally entrenched among local whites, the authors write. Those views have simply been passed down, argue the authors, citing extensive research showing that children often inherit the political attitudes of their parents and peers.

The data, says Sen, points to the importance of institutional and historical legacy when understanding political views. Most quantitative studies of voters rely on contemporary influences, such as education, income, or the degree of urbanity. The findings are also in line with research on the lingering economic effects of slavery. Studies have shown that former slave populations in Africa, South and Central America, and the United States continue to experience disparity in income, school enrollment, and vaccinations.

For the study, the authors drew on publically available data, including the 1860 census and the Cooperative Congressional Election Study, a large representative survey of American adults. No external funding was required for the analysis.

 
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Posted by on September 21, 2013 in The New Jim Crow

 

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The Invisible Man Banned in North Carolina…

The long standing problem with conservatism is the belief that striking a bell from the right will stop if from ringing. If it rings, the solution to achieve the desired goal of striking the bell without it ringing is to strike it further from the right.

There are obviously some folks on the school board down there in North Carolina who haven’t enjoyed the benefit of an education.

Invisible Man Banned: Ralph Ellison’s Landmark Novel Banned From School Libraries

A lack of “literary value” has apparently left Ralph Ellison’s landmark 1952 novel, Invisible Man banned from school libraries in Randolph County, N.C., the Asheboro Courier-Tribune reports.

According to the Tribune, a parent of an eleventh grader wrote the school district expressing her disapproval of the book’s availability to students stating:

The narrator writes in the first person, emphasizing his individual experiences and his feelings about the events portrayed in his life. This novel is not so innocent; instead, this book is filthier, too much for teenagers. You must respect all religions and point of views when it comes to the parents and what they feel is age appropriate for their young children to read, without their knowledge. This book is freely in your library for them to read.As the school district’s policy requires, the parent’s complaints lead to votes on the school and district levels. Both held that the book should remain available to students in the library. However, in a 5-2 vote, the school board voted to ban the book, with one board member, Gary Mason, stating, “I didn’t find any literary value.”

Mason’s blunt assessment however, runs counter to decades of intellectual criticism of the novel, which won the 1953 National Book Award for fiction, beating out Ernest Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea and John Steinbeck’s East of Eden.

In 1995, writing for the New York Times, Roger Rosenblatt praised the novel as a masterpiece.

“Ralph Ellison’s “Invisible Man,” which won the National Book Award in 1953, was instantly recognized as a masterpiece, a novel that captured the grim realities of racial discrimination as no book had, ” Rosenblatt wrote. “Its reputation grew as Ellison retreated into a mythic literary silence that made his one achievement definitive.”

Including the book in its list of 100 Best English Language Novels since 1923, Time literary critic Lev Grossman also expressed great admiration for Ellison’s work.

“Evenhandedly exposing the hypocrisies and stereotypes of all comers, Invisible Man is far more than a race novel, or even a bildungsroman. It’s the quintessential American picaresque of the 20th century.”

Still, this kind of high praise wasn’t enough to prevent the book from being banned from school libraries in Randolph County, N.C.

 
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Posted by on September 20, 2013 in Black History, Stupid Tea Bagger Tricks

 

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Stand Your Moron! Road Rage Incident With CCW Gun Holders

Sometimes, there is justice in the world…

All on 3 now…1..2…

Drivers Shoot Each Other Dead in Road Rage Spat

Two people died Wednesday night after shooting each other following an apparent road rage incident in Ionia.

“In follow up to yesterday’s shooting, the two deceased men are James Pullum, 43, and Robert Taylor, 56, both of Ionia,” according to the Ionia Department of Public Safety Facebook page Thursday morning.

The men were pronounced dead at Sparrow Ionia Hospital later in the evening.

The incident happened just before 7 p.m. in the parking lot of the Wood’s Wonder Wand car wash, 426 S. Steele St. The men apparently got out of their vehicles and began arguing. Both men eventually took out their guns and opened fire.

Witnesses said they heard about seven or eight gunshots.

Ionia Department of Public Safety Director Troy Thomas told 24 Hour News 8 both men had valid concealed carry licenses.

Photos: Police investigate apparent road rage deaths

“I think it’s crazy that a small town has to have two people die,” witness Allen Daggett, who arrived at the scene just as first responders did, said Wednesday night. “I feel sorry for the people that died. I feel sorry for the families and everyone’s [who is] acquainted with them,” he said.

Daggett told 24 Hour News 8 he saw a good Samaritan from a nearby business run to the scene to try to help. He said the man had to kick guns out of the way to begin CPR on the drivers.

“I watch [the first responders] pick one guy up and take him to the hospital,” said Daggett. “[They] did CPR on the guy for 45 minutes and the guy I doubt was alive at the time.”

At least one handgun remained in between the vehicles late Wednesday night as police investigated.

Another witness, who was at the Family Video across the street from the shooting, told 24 Hour News 8 she heard a sound like firecrackers and then screaming. She said emergency crews, including two ambulances, arrived a short time later.

A Michigan State Police mobile crime lab arrived around 11 p.m. at the scene, which was still very active.

 
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Posted by on September 19, 2013 in Domestic terrorism

 

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Foreign Adoption of American Children

Usually people think of Americans adopting children from other parts of the world. Increasingly…

It’s the other way around.

Seventy Dutch families who adopted U.S. kids gather for an annual Fathers Day picnic in June. The majority of the children being adopted are African American.

Overseas adoptions rise — for black American children

 Elisa van Meurs grew up with a Polish au pair, speaks fluent Dutch and English and loves horseback riding — her favorite horse is called Kiki but she also rides Pippi Longstocking, James Bond, and Robin Hood.

She plays tennis and ice hockey, and in the summer likes visiting her grandmother in the Swiss Alps.

“It’s really nice to go there because you can walk in the mountains and you can mountain bike … you can see Edelweiss sometimes,” said the 13-year-old, referring to the famous mountain flower that blooms above the tree line.

It’s a privileged life unlike that of her birth mother, a woman of African American descent from Indianapolis who had her first child at age 15. Her American family is “really nice but they don’t have a lot of money to do stuff,” said Elisa, who met her birth mother, and two siblings in 2011. “They were not so rich.”

Elisa van Meurs with her adoptive parents Bart and Heleene van Meurs on vacation in Switzerland.

While the number of international adoptions is plummeting — largely over questions surrounding the origin of children put up for adoption in developing countries — there is one nation from which parents abroad can adopt a healthy infant in a relatively short time whose family history and medical background is unclouded by doubt: The United States.

“I thought it was so strange. I’m here in Holland and they’re telling me I can get a baby” from the U.S., recalled Elisa’s father, Bart van Meurs, who originally planned to adopt from China or Colombia but held little hope of receiving an infant. “This can’t be true.” But less than 18 months later, van Meurs and his wife Heleene were at an Indiana hospital holding four-day-old Elisa.

While the typical tale of international adoption is U.S. families adopting a child from abroad, foreign families like the van Meurs adopt scores of U.S. children each year. The numbers are far lower than the thousands of overseas children adopted each year by U.S. families, but over the past decade the number of U.S. children adopted by foreign parents has been steadily rising — and almost all of the children are of African American descent like Elisa, say attorneys who facilitate international adoptions.

U.S. laws that allow birth mothers to choose the adoptive family of their children feed that growth, as some prefer to see their kids grow up in an exotic overseas locale rather than the U.S., experts say.

“A family from Indiana might talk about taking their child on vacation to Florida, to Disneyworld. A Dutch family talks about taking their child on vacation to the south of France or the Alps,” said Steven Kirsh of Kirsh & Kirsh, an Indianapolis law firm that has helped place hundreds of children with families in Europe.

Escape from racism

When Susan, a Florida resident, chose to place her son for adoption in 2006, the social worker gave her three binders with information about three prospective families. But she only needed to see the first binder of a couple from the Netherlands to make her decision. “If my mother had lived, she’d look just like (the prospective Dutch mother),” recalled the 37 year old, who asked that her last name not be used. Her own mother died when she was two months old.

Susan also wanted her son to grow up far away from the life she knew. She was a 30-year-old prostitute addicted to crack beginning a prison sentence when she learned she was pregnant. She did not know whether the child’s father was a man who raped her “for hours” or a drug dealer whom she “had done something with” one time, she said. But both men were African American, and she believed the child would face discrimination growing up in the United States.

“There’s too much prejudice over here. The white people are going to hate him because he’s half black, and the majority of black people are going to hate on him because he’s half white,” said Susan, who is Caucasian. “And then he’ll have to do extra things to prove what kind of a Negro he is, and extra things to prove what kind of a honky he is and I don’t want that. I did not want that for my kid.”

Even her own daughter, then aged 11, said “she would never accept that n***** child.”

Susan is not alone, says Adam Pertman, Executive Director of the Donaldson Adoption Institute and author of “Adoption Nation.” Many birth mothers have a perception that their black or mixed-race children will not face the same race issues in the Netherlands as in the United States.

“In the United States, as much as Americans want to believe it’s not true, we are still a country where there is a least some degree of racial prejudice. The birth mothers’ perception of Holland, in particular, was that the same was not true in Holland. There’s that feeling that maybe we can escape those issues if (the child is) somewhere else.”

This past June on Father’s Day, about 70 Dutch families who have adopted children from the U.S. gathered at a park outside Amsterdam. The picnic is a time for the children to celebrate their American heritage: “The kids are dressed with a red, white and blue beret in her hair, if it’s a girl, (or) they’re wearing New York Yankees t-shirts,” said Michael Goldstein, a New York attorney who facilitated the adoptions of the picnic attendees.

Among the families were Marielle van den Biggelaar, a stay-at-home mom and her husband, Marnix, a sales manager for a women’s clothing brand, who adopted their two children, Eva, four, and two-year-old Norbert as babies from Florida and New York, respectively. “For the kids it’s really important to see that they’re not alone and that all these kids have the same history, and they’re all adopted and they’re all from the same country,” Marielle said.

“It’s really nice to see them all together and to talk to each other about experiences — with their hair and with their skin — and they’re all the same people with the same mindset, so it’s really fun for the kids and for us, as well.”

The couple encourages their children to embrace their American origins, celebrating Thanksgiving each year with other families who adopted children from the United States. “We try to tell them about their culture and about their background,” said Marielle, who decided to adopt after years of unsuccessful fertility treatment. “We would love them to (start speaking) English when they’re really young because if they want to go back (to America) and if they want to see where they’re born, it would be nice if they can speak to … their parents if they are going to meet them.”

Their children stand out in Het Gooi, a village about 30 miles (50 kilometers) from Amsterdam. “They’re famous here, where we live, because it’s a really white society,” Marielle said…. (more)

 

 
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Posted by on September 17, 2013 in The Post-Racial Life

 

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The New Miss America…And Predictable Racism

Go to any conservative network publication and read the comments when the subject of race comes up…

And you will invariably see a bunch of racism. Some sites like the Old Free Republic site were literal sewers of white racists spewing forth all kinds of vitriol and hate.

white Supremacist organization regularly troll such sites, because it is a rich target area for new recruits.

And it really doesn’t matter whether the site is Brietbart or the Wall Street Journal. Not being “PC” has long been an excuse to tolerate and support racism and racist talk.

Freed from the blowback from others in normal face to face social commerce, the hidden bigots feel free, and invincible to consequence on the Internet.

Obviously anyone claiming that racism is no longer a problem in America…doesn’t own a computer.

The most recent occasion for the race baiters to come out was the Miss America contest where an Indian-American, Nina Davuluri won the contest.

Nina is a knockout by any non-conservative heterosexual male’s standards (except maybe you guys who like them extra “plump” women)…

Miss America: Why Racism Thrives Online

Some things evolve and some things don’t. Such is the case with this weekend’s wins of Nina Davuluri and Floyd Mayweather and the tsunami of racism that overtook Twitter in response.

Ladies first. Nina Davuluri is the second consecutive New Yorker to be crowned Miss America and the first Indian-American to win the title. Though Davuluri’s platform was “Celebrating Diversity Through Cultural Competency,” like all of us she is more than the sum of her racial and ethnic identities.

According to CNN, “the 24-year-old Fayetteville, New York, native was on the dean’s list and earned the Michigan Merit Award and National Honor Society nods while studying at the University of Michigan, where she graduated with a degree in brain behavior and cognitive science.” Her goal is to become a physician. Davuluri plans to invest her time as Miss America working with the U.S. Department of Education as an advocate for science, technology, engineering and mathematics. These are fields where women, regardless of racial or ethnic background, are sorely underrepresented.

Davuluri’s feel-good story took a racist turn in the Twitterverse, where some were outraged by the fact that 2014’s Miss America isn’t white. As in 2010, when the Lebanese-American beauty queen Rima Fakih was crowned Miss USA, racism was expressed not just explicitly in the form of tweets, but also in the level of ignorance those tweets exposed. For example, Jezebel reports that some tweeps seemed confused over whether the new Miss America was Indian-American, Arab, Muslim or Latina. They could all agree, however, that she didn’t deserve the title based on whom they thought she was.

Something similar happened to African-American boxer Floyd Mayweather after he won Saturday night’s fight against Mexican fighter Canelo Alvarez. Mayweather first caused a stir on Twitter when he entered the ring alongside Lil’ Wayne and Justin Bieber. Many wondered whether Mayweather and his team accessorized with the stars because of their social media reach into different racial communities. But that meme was nothing compared with the outpouring of racist epithets tweeps typed in response to Mayweather’s amazing win. According to a report from Latino Rebels, online bigots concluded that Mayweather didn’t win because of his talent, skill and training. Rather, he won because he is black and that’s definitely not a characteristic to be praised, from a racist point of view.

Although reports are right to highlight and challenge these expressions of online racism, particularly in this weekend’s cases, the tone of surprise is a bit misleading.  Ebony’s Jamilah Lemieux had said it seems as if “the Internet just met the Internet” in recent weeks and that by now we shouldn’t be shocked by online racism. Lemieux is right. Online racism is entirely consistent with offline racism and demographic shifts.

For instance, the number of U.S. hate groups has more than doubled in the last 10 years, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center, up to 1,007 active hate groups in the United States in 2012. Deborah Lauter, civil rights director for the Anti-Defamation League, has said that thousands of hate websites are live, “more than we can possibly keep track of.” Survey research indicates that the rise in active hate groups is correlated with census projections stating that white people will no longer be the U.S. racial majority by 2042. The hate surges online when achievements by people of color are noted and interpreted as taking away something to which a white person “should be” entitled. So people like Davuluri and Mayweather become targets because they represent demographic change and new opportunities for people of color, while challenging stereotypes about who Americans are and what they can achieve.

Racist ignorance in virtual spaces may often be misspelled and factually incorrect, but it should be taken seriously because its effects on the recipient can be powerful. According to a study published in the Journal of Adolescent Health by Dr. Brendesha Tynes, a professor of Education at USC, of 264 Midwestern high school students, approximately 20 percent of whites, 29 percent of blacks and 42 percent of “other” or multiple races reported being personally subjected to racial epithets or other discrimination online. These young people were more likely to become depressed, anxious and, possibly, less successful academically. What’s more is the effect on race talk in general. The danger of online racism is that people seem to get away with it and public disapproval in the form of reports like this one do not appear to have the same effect in lessening racist speech as disapproval does in face-to-face encounters. For evidence of this, check out the many YouTube testimonials from online gamers via the Gambit Hate Speech Project by MIT-Singapore Game Lab.

The Internet we have is not the safe space it was promised to be. But the good news is that we can do something about it. As digital citizens we can make the Internet safer. We can engage in self-reflection and deal with criticism from others in a way that makes real race talk possible. That’s means fighting racism with truth about who we are and how the world is really changing. After all, racism 2.0 is not a foregone conclusion. We, the people, have made it seem that way. And we have the power to make it different.

As to the tattooed Miss Kansas, who lost – Miss America is about beauty and to a lesser extent class, talent, and intelligence…

Not about looking trashy by screwing up that beauty covering yourself in ink.

 
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Posted by on September 17, 2013 in Domestic terrorism, The New Jim Crow

 

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Bill Cosby…Again

Not sure how Bill got conned into appearing on Don Lemon’s show (senility?), but here he is. The first clip is about the 50th anniversary of the Birmingham Church Bombing. And on a day like today, where we suffered through yet another of the seemingly weekly mass murders by gun at the Navy Yard in Washington DC – It’s a good time to reflect…

Now the second clip is the Cosby of a few years ago. The money line for conservatives to misinterpret what is saying is “No-groes” which he spouts at the 5 minute mark.

Now, Cosby makes a very good point about the juvenile incarceration system in this country – and it’s systemic failure.You can bet that isn’t what is going to be quoted…

 

 
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Posted by on September 16, 2013 in Faux News, The New Jim Crow

 

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Condo Remembers Denise McNair, 16th Street Baptist Church Bombing in 1963

Interesting – because prior to now, I don’t remember seeing anywhere that Condo talked about any of this. Condo’s father was not in the Civil Rights Movement, choosing instead to take a back seat. The ethics of that are up to debate…

As well as Condo’s ethics in working for the Bush Administration. While I don’t believe there is any evidence that GW is a bigot, there is more than a little evidence that some of the folks he brought to Washington were and are. The nuances of whether she could have done more not taking the job, or accomplished more by taking the job are also open to debate. Calling Condo a latter day Hattie McDaniels is unfair. Calling her a failure because of her role in a failed Presidency..isn’t.

I think this reaction is because of he Trayvon Martin murder. Like the George Zimmerman trial, initial efforts to convict the murderers were stymied, with the first conviction not coming for another 14 years, with others not being convicted until 30 years later. Justice in some parts of America moves much more slowly for some people.

American actress Hattie McDaniel (1895 – 1952) with her Academy Award of Merit for Outstanding Achievement, circa 1945. McDaniel won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her role of Mammy in ‘Gone With The Wind’, making her the first African-American to win an Academy Award.

Condoleezza Rice Recalls Birmingham Bombing That Killed Childhood Friend

When a church bombing killed four young black girls on a quiet Sunday morning in 1963, life for a young Condoleezza Rice changed forever.

The racial attack on the 16th Street Baptist Church, in the former secretary of state’s hometown of Birmingham, Alabama, rocked the nation and led to sweeping changes in laws governing civil rights.

But for Rice, just 8 years old at the time, the tragedy meant the death of a little girl she used to play dolls with, and the loss of her own youthful sense of security.

“As an 8-year-old, you don’t think about terror of this kind,” said Rice, who recounted on Friday her memory of the bombing and its aftermath in remarks to a gathering of civic leaders in Birmingham as part of several days of events leading up to the 50th anniversary of the bombing on Sept. 15.

Rice’s hometown had become a place too dangerous for black children to leave their own neighborhoods, or go downtown and visit Santa Claus, or go out of the house after dark.

“There was no sanctuary. There was no place really safe,” she said.

Rice’s friend, 11-year-old Denise McNair, died in the blast along with 14-year-olds Carole Robertson, Addie Mae Collins and Cynthia Wesley. Their deaths at the hands of Ku Klux Klan members garnered national support for passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Events for the 50th anniversary of the bombing will include a screening of filmmaker Spike Lee’s new documentary, “Four Little Girls,” and a memorial service on Sunday scheduled to include U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder.

Rice has a treasured photo of her friend accepting a kindergarten certificate from Rice’s father, who was a pastor at another church. McNair had gone to preschool there. McNair’s father was the community photographer, documenting birthday parties and weddings in happier times.

“Everyone in the black community knew one of those girls,” Rice said.

Her father told her the bombing had been done by “hateful men,” she said, but it was an act that later uncovered something ultimately good.

“Out of great tragedy, people began to recognize our humanity, and it brought people together,” said Rice.

The bombing left its mark on her even as an adult, when as U.S. Secretary of State under President George W. Bush, she used the experience to understand the plight of Palestinian and Israeli victims of bombs and attacks during peace negotiations.

“I told them I know what it is like for a Palestinian mother, who has to tell her child they can’t go somewhere,” Rice said, “and how it is for an Israeli mother, who puts her child to bed and wonders if the child will be alive in the morning.”

But with all of the progress made in civil rights during the 50 years since the blast, Rice cites education as the biggest impediment to equality in modern times.

She expressed dismay at racial disparities in the quality of education for minorities and criticized the “soft bigotry of low expectations” in a system she said challenges black students less than others.

“Even racism can’t be an excuse for not educating our kids,” she said. “If a kid cannot read, that kid is done. A child in a bad school doesn’t have time for racism to be eradicated. They have to learn today.”

A Stained Glass window in the 16th Street Baptist Church after the bombing.

 
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Posted by on September 14, 2013 in Black History, Domestic terrorism

 

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