In case you have room for more information about Black History and how Black history is inextricable with American history, here are some resources we suggest you check out:
1. BROWSE the Whitney Plantation research museum's website. Here is a 2015 article/ video published in the Atlantic, "Why America Needs a Slavery Museum" (6 minutes) about the Whitney as essential American history.
2. WATCH the PBS documentary, "Slavery By Another Name" (1:24) offers some compelling insights into the the systemic effecta of "debt servitude" including Convict Leasing, Peonage, and other forms of involuntary servitude that black Americans faced after the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863. A fascinating and disturbing historical account that alarming information that rarely makes it into our history textbooks.
3. LEARN about the National Memorial for Peace and Justice in Montgomery, Alabama (about a 4 1/2 hour drive from New Orleans) and the Legacy Museum : From Enslavement to Mass Incarceration that holds up the brutal murdering of black Americans by lynching as part of American history. Watch this video tour of the museum's focus (7 minustes) led by Bryan Stevens founder of the Equal Justice Initiative and an article in the Guardian asking the often heard question, "why don't they (blacks) just get over it?"
4. READ The Cross and the Lynching Tree by Systematic theologian, James H. Cone and the complicity of Christianity in endorsing lynchings, all the while missing the connection between this brutal execution and that of Jesus.
5. LISTEN to the song, Strange Fruit performed by Billie Holiday oftentimes under threat of violence given it's raw and painful honesty. Here are the lyrics:
Strange Fruit by Billie Holiday
Southern trees bear strange fruit
Blood on the leaves and blood at the root
Black bodies swinging in the southern breeze
Strange fruit hanging from the poplar trees
Pastoral scene of the gallant south
The bulging eyes and the twisted mouth
Scent of magnolias, sweet and fresh
Then the sudden smell of burning flesh
Here is fruit for the crows to pluck
For the rain to gather, for the wind to suck
For the sun to rot, for the trees to drop
Here is a strange and bitter crop
Songwriters: Lewis Allan / Maurice Pearl / Dwayne P Wiggins
Strange Fruit lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc