This week I have chosen to “Listen” as part of my Lenten Racial Equity Challenge. We ‘hear’ many things over the course of our days, but how often do we actually ‘listen?’ I confess that I had heard fleeting references to the Tulsa Race Massacre of 1921 but until this summer, when I heard references to it during the protests that followed the death of George Floyd, I had not really listened. I was prompted to read up on this not well known (to me) piece of history and it was chilling. I chose to circle back on this incident during Lent and listened to On Point Radio’s interview with Tulsans about the 1921 ‘Black Wall Street’ massacre, and recent efforts to integrate this history into the Oklahoma education system (the link can be found on here: https://www.eddiemoorejr.com/21daychallenge/#listen). At 46 minutes long it does require a bit of an investment of time, but I found it well worth it. Upon listening I fall firmly in the camp that this piece of history should be included in all states’ curricula, not just in Oklahoma. If you listen, please share your thoughts. What can we do to encourage knowledge of Black History in our schools and in our lives, not just during February’s Black History Month but all year long?
On a lighter note, also under the topic of ‘listening’ I thought I would share some of the music on my “Soundtrack for Justice” Spotify playlist. I realize the many of songs on this playlist are upbeat, but I imagine I selected them to give me hope.
“Lean on Me” – Bill Withers
“The Times They are a Changin’” – Bob Dylan
“Love Train” – The O’Jays
“Wake Up Everybody” – Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes
“Change is Gonna Come” – Sam Cooke
“Put a Little Love In Your Heart” – Jackie DeShannon
“Rise Up” – Andra Day
“Peace Train” – Yusuf/Cat Stevens
“Changes” – David Bowie
‘Brave” – Sara Bareilles
What do you notice in your daily round? Are you surprised by what you notice? Are you inspired to make any changes, and if so what might you change?