in the event you missed the news today

“An emotional President Joe Biden marked the 100th anniversary of the massacre that destroyed a thriving Black community in Tulsa, declaring Tuesday that he had ‘come to fill the silence’ about one of the nation’s darkest — and long suppressed — moments of racial violence.

‘Some injustices are so heinous, so horrific, so grievous, they cannot be buried, no matter how hard people try,’ Biden said. ‘Only with truth can come healing.’

Biden’s commemoration of the deaths of hundreds of Black people killed by a white mob a century ago came amid the current national reckoning on racial justice.” —— Jonathan Lemire and Darlene Superville in the AP

Neither my American history class in West Columbia, Texas in 1963 nor my American history lectures at the University of Texas in Austin in 1966 mentioned the Tulsa Massacre of 1921. “Just because history is silent, ” President Biden said today, “does not mean that it did not take place.”

Today we as a nation have an opportunity to acknowledge an oppressive silence about an unspeakable horror that created a generational deprivation of justice and equality which should be the rights of every American. We must not only admit the betrayal but also support actions to make amends to those survivors of the Massacre, their descendants, their home town.

I believe as individuals we also have an opportunity, an obligation, to speak truth to our families, friends and elected officials at all levels of government about the importance of equal treatment for everyone regardless of our differences. Nelson Mandela said:

“No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.”

May that be our truth.

Stay safe, stay sane, get vaccinated and please stay tuned.

About Sheila Morris

Sheila Morris is a personal historian, essayist with humorist tendencies, lesbian activist, truth seeker and speaker in the tradition of other female Texas storytellers including her paternal grandmother. In December, 2017, the University of South Carolina Press published her collection of first-person accounts of a few of the people primarily responsible for the development of LGBTQ organizations in South Carolina. Southern Perspectives on the Queer Movement: Committed to Home will resonate with everyone interested in LGBTQ history in the South during the tumultuous times from the AIDS pandemic to marriage equality. She has published five nonfiction books including two memoirs, an essay compilation and two collections of her favorite blogs from I'll Call It Like I See It. Her first book, Deep in the Heart: A Memoir of Love and Longing received a Golden Crown Literary Society Award in 2008. Her writings have been included in various anthologies - most recently the 2017 Saints and Sinners Literary Magazine. Her latest book, Four Ticket Ride, was released in January, 2019. She is a displaced Texan living in South Carolina with her wife Teresa Williams and their dogs Spike, Charly and Carl. She is also Naynay to her two granddaughters Ella and Molly James who light up her life for real. Born in rural Grimes County, Texas in 1946 her Texas roots still run wide and deep.
This entry was posted in family life, Lesbian Literary, Life, Personal, politics, racism, Reflections, sexism, Slice of Life, The Way Life Is, The Way Life Should Be and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to in the event you missed the news today

  1. It was big news here too. Well done President Biden!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Absolutely! Glad to know it was news there as well!

      Liked by 1 person

    • On a totally unrelated topic, are you watching Roland Garros matches this year? I have to get up mighty early to catch the 5:00 a.m. ones!! Great tennis every year…


      • Watched the first day. Building up to the more interesting stuff. What do you think of the Osaka debacle?

        Liked by 1 person

      • Actually our household was divided on the Osaka debacle. Pretty found it difficult to understand anyone being depressed with $50+ million in endorsements. And added that we are all depressed about something in our lives and/or the world in which we live.
        I think Osaka’s issues with the interviews would have been better served if she had not played that first round in the tournament. But, then, she’s young, trying to find her platform, and I believe she has great respect for the game and its history. I hope she can get the support she’ll need now to work through this with her family, other players, the tennis world in general and the intrusive media – both social and commercial. Whew. Regardless, I’m loving Roland Garros this year!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, we think she didn’t handle the lead up well. Dialogue with everyone is needed. It’s important to keep everyone in the game!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Bob Slatten says:

    People must learn to hate.
    And they can be taught NOT to hate just as easily.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. The Massacre was never mentioned in any of my classes, either, despite the fact that all of my schooling took place IN and around Tulsa. There are many people there, to this very day, who deny that the horror happened, despite the overwhelming evidence. The Greenwood area has managed to survive, and it is even thriving in certain areas, but there are still vast swaths of empty blocks where nothing exists but the remains of weather-worn foundations. It looks like a natural disaster took place. But it was entirely man-made….

    Liked by 2 people

    • Very interesting, Brian. The Massacre was, indeed, entirely man-made.
      And the intentional omission from our history books was also entirely man-made. “Man” must not be quite what we hoped we would be.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Luanne says:

    I need to ask my kids if they learned about it in school. I did not, but I had standard fare of the day all through school. I never had a black teacher, if you can believe that!

    Liked by 1 person

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