Saturday, April 20, 2013

Fw: Jesse Jackson: Reparations in order for 1963 bombing



Reparations in order for 1963 bombing

BY JESSE JACKSON
April 15, 2013

It was terror that shook the nation. On Sunday, Sept. 15, 1963, a bomb exploded in the basement of the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Ala. Four little girls, all dressed in white — 14-year-olds Addie Mae Collins, Carole Robertson and Cynthia Wesley, and 11-year-old Denise McNair — died in the explosion, and are remembered in history.

Congress now is considering offering them posthumously a Congressional Gold Medal.

But there was a fifth little girl caught in the blast — 10-year-old Sarah Collins Rudolph — the younger sister of Addie Mae. Partly blinded, she staggered from the basement bleeding from the nose and ears from a concussion. She spent two months in the hospital, but she survived. To this day, she bears her injuries, and the traumatic stress that does not go away. She doesn't want a medal; she wants justice.

Now she is speaking out, witness to that horrible crime in those mean days. She's angry because her sister's body has been lost. When they went to exhume the body, the grave contained someone else's remains. She wonders why there was no compensation for her injuries, no help for the families.

The Birmingham bombing came days after a court order calling for three schools in Huntsville to open for limited integration had been defied by Gov. George Wallace, who called out the National Guard to bar the students. It came less than three weeks after the March on Washington and Dr. King's "I have a dream" oration. Veterans of the civil rights movement were girding themselves for the reprisals that seemed to follow any sign of progress.

Dr. King suggested that some had misinterpreted the dignified and disciplined march on Washington — now so seared in our memories — and thought the revolution was over. No, he told the Southern Conference Leadership Convention in September, "We are more determined than ever before that nonviolence is the way. Let them bring on their bombs. Let them sabotage us with the evil of cooperation with segregation. We intend to be free."

Sarah Collins Rudolph did not choose to be a hero. Her life was scarred by an act of terror unleashed against the most innocent of little girls.

As Barbara Arnwine, head of the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, commented, Rudolph has been overlooked because the basic story has not been told. So much of what we remember about the civil rights movement are the victories, the great moments. Too often, Arnwine argues, "we whitewash the history" and shove the victims into a closet to keep them from reminding us of the reality.

Juries eventually convicted three Ku Klux Klansmen in the bombing years later, and one suspected accomplice died without ever having been charged. One of the four is still in prison and the others are dead.

Now Sarah Collins Rudolph has had the courage to stand up and tell her tale. She wants Congress to recognize that lives were lost and scarred, in part because of the failure of the federal government to enforce the laws of the land, and to protect those who were asserting their rights in the face of domestic terrorism.

Congress must act now beyond the symbol of medals to the substance of justice and compensation. The victims of Sept. 16, 1963, and the victims of Sept. 11, 2001, are justly due reparations. Sarah Collins Rudolph is in the lineage of those to whom our nation is in debt.

Keep up with Rev. Jackson and the work of the Rainbow PUSH Coalition at www.rainbowpush.org.


This email was sent to:
wdavis@walterdavisenterprises.com

To unsubscribe, go to:
http://rainbowpush.org/unsubscribe
Post a Comment

The Hidden Enemy

Healing

Healing
Healing

Corruption

Corruption
Corruption in the Senate

Compassion

Compassion
Compassion

Raise the Minimum Wage

Raise the Minimum Wage

Capitolism

Capitolism

Hypocrits

Hypocrits

My New Book About Sudan

Ceasar's Messiah Movie Trailer

The Dark Side of Coffee Trade

Miko Peled "The General's Son" Exposes Israeli Lies

Are these Your Heros?

Are these Your Heros?

National shame

National shame

Law Enforcement Against Prohibition

Stephen Fry on Catholisism

Juanita Ayson on Accupuncture

Interview with Congressman Filner

Free Trade Enslaves Us All

Blog Archive

Farouk Al Nasser

Farouk Al Nasser
Farouk Al Nasser at NCCPJ

Victor Calle

Victor Calle
At NCCP April 2008

Gore Vidal and Floyd Morrow

Gore Vidal and Floyd Morrow
April Fundraiser in San Diego

Tanja and Cindy Sheehan

Tanja and Cindy Sheehan
Fund raiser for Cindy April 2008

CITN

CITN
The Citizens' Internet Television Network

CITRad

CITRad
The Citizens' Internet Radio Network

Save America

Save America
Save America

Fighting

Fighting
Fighting

Believe

Believe
Believe

We Are All One

We Are All One
We Are All One

Secular Humanism

Secular Humanism
Secular Humanism

Change the System

Change the System
Change the System

A Lie Does Not Become the Truth

A Lie Does Not Become the Truth
A lie does not become the truth

Coexist

Coexist
Coexist

Bankers

Bankers
Bankers

Fetus Rights

Fetus Rights
Fetus Rights

The Earth Was Created

The Earth Was Created
The Earth Was Created

Lessons

Lessons
Lessons