Header Ads Widget

President Biden memorializes the 101st anniversary of Oklahoma's Black Wall Street' racial violence, This was a massacre, not a riot

President Biden memorializes the 101st anniversary of Oklahoma's

President Joe Biden marked the 101st anniversary of the Tulsa Race Massacre on Wednesday by memorising the hundreds of Black residents killed in what was one of the worst forms of racial violence in American history.

In 1921, a white mob descended on Greenwood, dubbed "Black Wall Street," and destroyed 35 city blocks. At the time, the district had 10,000 residents and thrived as a self-contained hub of Black prosperity.

In a statement released Wednesday, Biden stated, "This was not a riot; it was a massacre." "As many as 300 African-Americans were killed, and approximately 10,000 people were left homeless." There were fires in homes, businesses, and churches. "The riches of a generation of Black people was extinguished."

According to a 2001 report by an Oklahoma panel investigating the riot, Greenwood citizens filed over $1.8 million in loss claims, which would be worth over $27 million today. All except one of these were turned down by the city. A white shop owner was compensated for weapons stolen from his store.

According to city commission estimates, O.W. Gurley, one of Tulsa's wealthiest Black men, lost $157,783 in the riot. Today, the real estate developer is worth more than $1 million. According to the article, another Black businessman, J.B. Stradford, had a fortune twice as great.

However, not every resident made an insurance claim or sued the city. Experts think that the financial toll will be much greater, with Black property worth upwards of $200 million in today's money.

Greenwood pushed forward with reconstruction after the massacre, despite significant opposition from the city and white banks.

"Discrimination was systematically established in our laws and practices in the years that followed, keeping Black residents out of opportunity and ensuring that the attack on Black families and Black wealth remained across generations," Biden said in his speech.

Due to the magnitude of the bloodshed and devastation, the Tulsa massacre was mostly forgotten for decades.

"Within a decade of its occurrence," the commission wrote in its report, "the Tulsa race riot went from being a front-page, national calamity to being portrayed as an unfortunate, but not particularly significant, event in the state's past."

According to the report, state textbooks published in the 1920s and 1930s made no mention of it. Due to what Tulsa's school superintendent called a "conspiracy of silence," Oklahoma students were not required to learn about the massacre until the 2000s.

The president alluded to his visit to Tulsa a year earlier for the 100th anniversary of the massacre in his statement on Wednesday. It was the first visit by a sitting US president to the site.

"Great nations do not hide from their histories," he said in Tulsa. "We are a great nation, and by confronting and correcting the injustices of the past, America will grow even greater."


Post a Comment