“The challenge of the 21st century is not to demand equal opportunity in the machinery of oppression, but rather to identify and dismantlethose structures in which racism continues to be embedded” -Angela Davis
This quote challenges us, “not to demand equal opportunity in the machinery of oppression”. What a thought provoking statement! If we “demand” and then receive “equal opportunity in the machinery of oppression” what have we really gained? Are we “struggling” in the right direction?
What are you thoughts on this quote Black Mail Readers? We’d love to hear your feedback!
The Ishango Bone is likely one of the oldest mathematical tools in existence. Sources differ regarding the date of its discovery with some indicating that it was discovered in 1950 while others site 1960 as the date of discovery. The bone was found amongst the ruins of a settlement near Lake Edward that was buried after a volcanic explosion. The Ishango Bone was discovered by geologist, Jean de Heinzelin de Braucort (1920-1998) in the Ishango region of the Democratic Republic of Congo. The bone is believed to be the fibula of a baboon. It measures approximately 10cm-14cm in length and is inscribed with a organized series of notches. At one end of the tool is a sharp quartz edge that is believed to have been used as a writing instrument. The Ishango Bones discovered by Heinzelin de Braucourt are housed at the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences. Continue reading “The Ishango Bone: Early Tool Used For Mathematic Computations”→
A Joe’s Crab Shack location in Minnesota is in hot water. On March 10, 2016, Tyrone Williams and Chauntyll Allen visited the Joe’s Crab Shack in Roseville, MN. When seated, they noticed a picture of what appeared to be a lynching. The photo displayed a large group of whites at the public hanging of a black man. The picture was captioned, “Hanging At Groesbeck, TX on April 12, 1895”. Added to the photo was a speech bubble near the executioner’s stand, “All I said was, I don’t like the gumbo”
Restaurant management apologized for the photo and offered the patrons a free meal which they refused. The man depicted in the photo was Richard Burleson who was convicted of killing a man with a rock in 1894. The horrific legacy of lynching in the U.S. is well documented. It was not at all unusual for blacks to be accused of trumped up charges and not given due legal process. The patrons and the NAACP demanded a public apology and the removal of the table. They also demanded that the franchise owner, Ignite Restaurant Group make a donation to the local NAACP. It is unknown if the picture was present in other Joe’s Crab Shack locations. It is not clear if the picture appears at other locations of the Texas-based restaurant.
Some of our Black Mail readers may remember our previous Black Mail post about photographs from lynchings being sold as postcards. In 2016, it seems that there are some who are still finding ways to profit off the murder and mistreatment of African Americans. Even more surprising is that the offensive nature of the “décor” could would not have been questioned before making it all the way into the view of the general public.
Dr. Jane Landers is a History professor at Vanderbilt University who has done extesnive research into the presence of Africans in the Americas that predates the antebellum south or British colonization efforts of the 1500’s. Her work is fascinating paints a very different picture than what most of us have been taught in school. For many of us we encapsulate black history as starting with slavery and ending with MLK. In this short video, she shares some fascinating history and little known facts about the history of Africans in the Americas!
6 Year old Ava Rogers is learning about Black History in such a creative and powerful way! Her mother selects women who have made an impact on history and Ava does a photo shoot dressed up as these women!
The images are striking and they are a beautiful way to teach a child about the legacy and impact of Black women! Bravo to this mother-daughter duo!! Read the full article and check out the photos at forharriet.com
Delilah L. Beasley (1871 – 1934), was a black journalist, reporter, and historian. She was born in Cincinnati, OH. Her career in journalism began at the age of 12 when she began writing correspondence for the Cleveland Gazette. She then published her first column in the Sunday Cincinnati Enquirer three years later under the headline, “Mosaics”. Beasley published commentary on social activities within the black community for both the local black and white newspapers. When her parents died in the 1880’s she stopped reporting for a short time so that she could seek employment to support herself. She worked as a domestic, massage therapist, and trained as a hair dresser.
Beasley moved to Oakland, CA in 1910 where she worked as a nurse and domestic. She also became involved with the black women’s club network. In Oakland, she was able to resume her passion of reporting; writing columns on activities within the African American community for local newspapers. Beasley wrote for the white Oakland Tribune and the black Oakland Sunshine. Her column for the Oakland Tribune was called, “Activities Among Negroes”. Beasley’s influence as a journalist had a profound impact, not only on the black community, but also among white journalists as well. It was through her efforts that the white press stopped using words like, “darkie” and “nigger”. They also began to capitalize the “N” in Negro.