Monuments teach us lessons about the toll of hatredRoundup
tags: Emmett Till
Emmett Till has been dead more than 60 years, and they still won’t let him rest in peace.
Someone again vandalized a memorial to the African-American teenager who was kidnapped, mutilated, and murdered by two white men in Money, Miss., in 1955. Originally installed in 2011, the marker was scratched with a blunt tool in May, but an attack in late June attack left far more damage. Panels featuring Till’s image and the story of his killing were peeled off. All that remains is the logo for the Mississippi Freedom Trail, of which the memorial is part.
Whoever destroyed that marker wanted to erase history.
This isn’t the only memorial to the Chicago boy that’s been marred in Mississippi. Last fall, someone shot up a marker at the Tallahatchie River, where Roy Bryant and J.W. Milam dumped Till’s brutalized body. (An all-white jury acquitted the two men; later, they gave a detailed confession to Look magazine.) In 2006, an Emmett Till Memorial Highway sign was defaced with the initials “KKK.”
Do not equate the desecration of these memorials with the recent removal of Confederate monuments in New Orleans. Those statues of Robert E. Lee and Jefferson Davis remain intact but out of public view. Like the defeated men whom those statues commemorate, the vandals who deface civil rights memorials intend to intimidate and sustain racist subjugation. One can draw a straight line from these unknown criminals to zealots of the “lost cause” still choking on the bitter disgrace of a nation-defining war that ended more than 150 years ago. ...
comments powered by Disqus
- A girl named Greta and the seriously sexist history of Time’s Person of the Year
- Poll: Majority of Democrats think Obama was better president than Washington
- Civil War Soldiers Used Hair Dye to Make Themselves Look Better in Pictures, Archaeologists Discover
- Monumental statue of black man defies Confederate monuments
- From Consensus To Deadlock: Is Impeachment Still A Check On Presidents?
- Black Scholars Respond to Dr. Lorgia García Peña Tenure Denial at Harvard
- Historians Kirsten Weld and Erik Baker Interviewed About Harvard Graduate Worker Strike in Chronicle of Higher Education
- Kate Shaw: Andrew Johnson Was Impeached for Being a Racist Demagogue
- Bullets That Killed John F. Kennedy Immortalized as Digital Replicas by Smithsonian
- 37 books for history lovers: 11 Historians Select Their Favorite Books of 2019