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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
"The U.S. Senate apologized Monday for never having outlawed lynching, which between 1880 and 1960 took the lives of more than 4,700 people, most of them blacks.

"This (lynching) is really an act of domestic terrorism, and I think it's quite appropriate today that we're discussing this as our country leads the fight against terrorism abroad," said Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., one of two sponsors of the apology resolution, along with Sen. George Allen, R-Va. The resolution passed by voice vote without objection.

"Lynchings, defined as any mob killing, not just hanging, have been documented in 46 states. Victims included Italians, Jews, Asians, Latinos and women, but most were blacks. Historians have documented 4,742 lynchings between 1890 and 1960, and 80 percent occurred in Southern states.

"Lynching was one way whites reinforced the prevailing racial power structure, historians say. Victims often were blacks who had achieved a degree of success or conveyed a sense of self-worth that Southern whites deemed unacceptable. State and local officials often took part in savage and public lynchings, mostly of black men, sometimes for such offenses as disagreeing with a white man or owning a successful farm."

More here:
http://www.realcities.com/mld/krwash...printstory.jsp

That said, given the darkness of this part of U.S. history, it makes you wonder why some senators didn't sign on to a statement of support:

"No lawmaker opposed the measure, but 20 of the 100 senators had not signed a statement of support of it shortly before a vote was taken on a nearly empty Senate floor.

"I think it's politics. They're afraid of losing votes from people of prejudice," Duster said of those who did not sign the statement of support."

From:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20050614/...g_dc&printer=1

This initiative was inspired by a few senators who read "Without Sanctuary: Lynching Photography in America": http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...glance&s=books

The photos are currently being exhibited at the Chicago Historical Society:
http://www.chicagohistory.org/exhibi...uary/index.asp
 

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Ah, yes. As Nina Simone would say, "Strange Fruit hanging from the Poplar tree."

Hmmm. Maybe they'll outlaw hate groups or racist talk radio, too. That could improve life in this country a lot. But, it would cost a few elections or erode the power base of the current administration. Bummer.
 

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Who's Nina Simmone? Did she write it, cause I know my dearest Billy Holliday sang it . . . just thinking about it moves me to tears and goose bumps.

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No lawmaker opposed the measure, but 20 of the 100 senators had not signed a statement of support of it shortly before a vote was taken on a nearly empty Senate floor.
Yeah - that part really got to me. But I disagree with :

Quote:
"I think it's politics. They're afraid of losing votes from people of prejudice," Duster said of those who did not sign the statement of support."
I think they are just being men of integrity - they themselves are bigots!!! To say it was a political manoeuvre grants them too much grace.
 

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Did you notice how they voted on it? They didn't have a senator by senator vote so everyone would be on the record. Frist avoided voting for it in that manner. Also, several senators refused to endorse the measure. The vote was set up so that it was a voice vote. As long as no one said 'nay', it passed unamiously (sp?), even if only one senator was there to say yes.

So the senate didn't really support this. They just let it pass. Cowards.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Behold, the Honorable Sen. "She certainly seems to respond to visual stimuli" Frist, in action

"Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) refused repeated requests for a roll call vote that would have put senators on the record on a resolution apologizing for past failures to pass anti-lynching laws, officials involved in the negotiations said Tuesday.

"And there was disagreement Tuesday over whether Saxby Chambliss, one of Georgia's two Republican senators, had supported the measure when it was approved Monday night.

"As dozens of descendants of lynching victims watched from the Senate gallery, the resolution was adopted Monday evening under a voice vote procedure that did not require any senator's presence.

"Eighty senators, however, had signed as co-sponsors, putting themselves on record as supporting the resolution. By the time the Senate recessed Tuesday evening, five other senators had added their names as co-sponsors, leaving 15 Republicans who had not."

***

"The resolution was adopted under what is called "unanimous consent," whereby it is adopted as long as no senator expresses opposition.

"But the group that was the driving force behind the resolution had asked Frist for a formal procedure that would have required all 100 senators to vote. And the group had asked that the debate take place during "business hours" during the week, instead of Monday evening, when most senators were traveling back to the capital.

"Frist declined both requests, the group's chief counsel, Mark Planning, said Tuesday evening."

More here (may need to be registered):
http://www.ajc.com/news/content/news...5natlynch.html
 

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Curandera, Oh yes. Strange Fruit was written and first sung by Billy Holliday. But, Nina Simone does a haunting job. She is no longer living, but moved to and died in France because she just couldn't stand living in the U.S. anymore. Give her a listen.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Tata
Curandera, Oh yes. Strange Fruit was written and first sung by Billy Holliday. But, Nina Simone does a haunting job. She is no longer living, but moved to and died in France because she just couldn't stand living in the U.S. anymore. Give her a listen.
Billie Holiday did not write Strange Fruit! A New York schoolteacher named Abel Meeropol wrote it under the pseudonym Lewis Allen. Holiday did have an important role in popularizing the song. There was a recent documentary about the song, the writer and some of the singers:

http://www.pbs.org/independentlens/s...ruit/film.html

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"Strange Fruit" was first performed at a New York teachers' union meeting and was brought to the attention of the manager of Cafe Society, a popular Greenwich Village nightclub, who introduced Billie Holiday to the writer. Holiday's record label refused to record the song but Holiday persisted and recorded it on a specialty label instead. The song was quickly adopted as the anthem for the anti-lynching movement. The haunting lyrics and melody made it impossible for white Americans and politicians to continue to ignore the Southern campaign of racist terror. (According to the Center for Constitutional Rights, between 1882 and1968, mobs lynched 4,743 persons in the United States, over 70 percent of them African Americans.)
Meeropol and his wife adopted the children of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg.

Nina Simone was one of many singers to sing Strange Fruit. She was active in the Civil Rights movement in the 1960s and wrote another famous protest song, Mississippi Goddamn:

http://www.boscarol.com/nina/html/wh...pigoddamn.html

Coincidentally (okay, not at all) two of the senators who failed to support the lynching apology were from Mississippi, Trent Lott and Thad Cochran. Mississippi had the highest number of lynchings. Mississippi Goddamn indeed.
 

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I knew Billy didn't write it - and remembered parts of the story how the song was written and came to Billy . . . but thanks for the links and the Nina Simone hint . . . sounds like Tina followed her and so many other famous black women to France . . .

Frickin' voters in the south - it is so hard to believe that with the "minority" vote and non-bigot vote there aren't enough votes out there to vote these jerks out of office in the south . . . . seems like they are showing their true colors in neon!
 

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More on Mississippi:

http://minorjive.typepad.com/hungryb...html#trackback

You realize that Mississippi is in the midst of the Goodman, Chaney and Schwerner trial right now? I should probably post a separate thread about it.

I think you can't pin this on "voters in the south"--if you see that "voters" are keeping racists in office, you can assume that minority votes in the area are being surpressed. I wish that there had been more change in the last 40 years.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by captain optimism
More on Mississippi:

I wish that there had been more change in the last 40 years.

I think that is what surprised me the most - the fact that I thought we'd be way beyond this already . . . life never ceases to amaze me . . .
 
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