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The 1921 Tulsa race riot is the deadliest one-day civil disturbance in American history. In that year, the Ku Klux Klan, in an effort to fuel the state of Oklahoma’s economy by driving African Americans out of the state, staged a race riot in the city of Tulsa, Oklahoma. Over the course of 2 days, the riot killed at least 300 people( that number is possibly much more), while another estimated 1200 people were injured. The riot destroyed much of the African American community in Tulsa.
The Tulsa race massacre destroyed an entire generation of African-Americans, shattering their dreams and their outlook on the future. The Tulsa race massacre divided the city. African Americans could no longer take shelter in their own neighborhoods, and had to endure the humiliation of not being allowed to come home after dark. Many parents left their children behind so that they wouldn’t have to experience what they had. The Tulsa Race Massacre affected both of the African American families in Tulsa. Many of the victims had children who were younger than 10 years of age, and the impact that this one incident had on the future of African-Americans was devastating.
While there is no justification for an unjustified act of terrorism, no matter who committed the act, we must realize that the fact that the 1920s Klan was able to instigate such a bloody and well-publicized riot in a state with a population less than 1% African American is not a coincidence, but a testament to the extent to which racism continues to affect our lives today. The fact that most Americans are blissfully unaware of the devastating racial injustices that many American citizens face on a daily basis is as much a reminder of how far we have come as it is a reminder of how far we have yet to go. The fact that over 100,000 African Americans were killed in interracial crimes during the 20th Century shows how far we have yet to go as a nation.
As Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “All we say to America is be true to what you said on paper.” African-Americans have contributed very much to America. Our ancestors practically built America and still has nothing to show for. I recently saw a statistic on CNN in regards to the wealth gap. It’s numbers are alarming!
Civil Rights activist fought for economic justice years ago and we still are dealing with it now. There is a lot of work to be done! A lot of people are against reparations but there is something to needs to be done to ensure economic development for the black community! Here were are 100 years later and the Greenwood area which was the Black Wall Street is now been minimized to just a few buildings that descendants have to hold on to to preserve family history. It is my hope that the Lord will shift things for African-Americans. I still have faith that we as a people will get to the promised land.