Moving from Jim Crow

When I meet folks such as the individuals pictured above from the era of forced integration, particularly during 1950s and 1960s, I often wonder if they ever changed or if they raised their children the way they were raised? I am sure I have attended school with some of their children. I am sure I have met individuals in public who hold the same beliefs as those pictured above. I can tell stories of friends I had as a boy who played with me at the park, but were not allowed to stay at my house. Or, whose parents would say hello and smile at me, only to talk about me later due to my race.

http://vijaypendakur.files.wordpress.com/2011/04/eckford-little-rock-nine-yelling.jpg      https://i2.wp.com/www.redfundsgroup.com/history/uslp8/poar06_littlerock0709.jpg

Above: That was then…                                                 Above: This is today.

Then again, I also have attended school with folks raised by the likes of Elizabeth Eckford (pictured above); we all recall her; she is most noted for the picture that captured her anger at the Little Rock Nine for integrating Little Rock Central. Today, Ms. Eckford embraces love and just. She can be found speaking to young people about the importance of love and the beauty of diversity.

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One thought on “Moving from Jim Crow

  1. I struggle with these questions ALL THE TIME. I’m often shocked and always saddened when I encounter people who are so rigid in their thinking that I doubt change is even a possibility for them.

    Where I find hope, though, is in the fact that I’m a teacher. EVERY student in my class is challenged to think beyond themselves, and my hope is that a student raised in a rigid, narrow-minded household will have an opportunity to peek outside of those walls to see that there is a world of possibility for the open and the inquisitive.

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