From Charleston, South Carolina: Thank you President Obama and First Lady Mrs. Michelle Obama for Truly Loving the People of this Great Country


Expressing Appreciation for the Presidency of Barack Obama

By Terri Mae Owens

As an African American Woman, I could not be prouder of the way President Obama and First Lady Mrs.Michelle Obama lead this country from 2008- 2016, and during their final days in 2017.

Watching the President and First Lady love, and express kindness and concern for the general health and well being of the citizens of this country, as well as for people around the world, in spite of harsh criticisms and personal attacks on their humanity, has inspired me to live my life by their example of taking the high road.

They have inspired me to not be complacent in my position as a citizen of this country, but to find ways to reach out to others, especially those who do not look like me, by using my gifts and talents as a human being, a historian and as an artist, to inspire unity, and effect positive change that helps to strengthens race relations in our country.

America belongs to all of her citizens, and in spite of the racist rhetoric expressed during the campaigning of President Elect Donald Trump, I am encouraged by knowing that regardless of race or religious affiliation, as citizens of this great country, that there are more of us that are unified in fighting to protect for all citizens, the freedoms and rights we value and hold dear as citizens of this great country, than those who are divided.

I am Looking forward to seeing how the Obama family continue using their experience and influence to help build an even more perfect union.

         Sharing Memories of the Obama Family and their Administration

Thank you President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama for Coming to Charleston During Our Time of Enormous Grief

President Obama Eulogy: Clementa  Pinckney’s Furneral

Thanks Jenna and Barbara

for sharing your letter and these pictures:

People Magazine

“Love and Happiness:An Obama Celebration”

“Yes We Can: People Share Their Most Memorable Moments

From the Obama’s Presidency

President Obama Farewell Speech in Chicago

Mrs. Obama, Thank for the Example you Set of Character

When Women Attacked your Humanity

“Bryan Stevenson Builds Museum that Confronts Slavery, Lynching, Segregation, and Mass Incarceration in America”


Charlie Rose: Bryan Stevenson

 

I applaud Attorney and Activist Bryan Stevenson for his vision to build a museum that under one roof, will educate visitors about the history of inhumane acts inflicted upon Africans and African Americas under the institution of slavery, by mob lynching, Throughout the Civil Rights Movement, and the injustices of schools to prison pipelines, and mass incarceration of black males.

http://www.al.com/news/montgomery/index.ssf/2016/09/equal_justice_initiative_build.html

https://www.charitynavigator.org/index.cfm?bay=search.summary&orgid=12756

Stevenson uses his professional platform and influence to advocate for a more humane and just society. His activism in the courtroom and as a citizen of this country, is reflective of the heart and insight of men who came before him. Men like Gahndi, Mandela, Malcolm X,  and Martin Luther King Jr. who advocated for racial equality.

Articles:

http://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/news/2016/02/26/google-racial-justice-grants-bryan-stevenson-equal-justice-initiative/80959244/http://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/news/2016/02/26/google-racial-justice-grants-bryan-stevenson-equal-justice-initiative/80959244/

Charlie Rose: Equal Justice Initiative

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/videos/2016-08-23/-the-equal-justice-initiative-charlie-rose

 

Please contact the Equal Justice Initiative and donate funds to aid Mr. Stevenson in the building of a museum that will reveal the impact of the legacy of slavery on today’s society. Thank you!

Equal Justice Initiative
122 Commerce St.
Montgomery, Alabama 36104

Phone: 334-269-1803
Fax: 334-269-1806
Email: contact_us@eji.org

I  too have similar, though not as grand ambitions, and I am inspired by the work Mr. Stevenson is doing.

While the work that I am doing is not in any way associated with Mr. Stevenson’s building of his museum,  in 2012 I began painting a collection of art that is dedicated to the memory of women and girls who were lynched on America’s soil.

The art is abstract in the sense that it was not created with the intention of projecting any likeness to any of the women or girls for which the collection is dedicated.

Checkout the site below, especially if conducting research  on lynching or if you are in need of  footage for a class presentation.

Without Sanctuary

Gentrification Displaces Black Residents in the City of Charleston, South Carolina


Gentrification Displaces Black Residents In the City of Charleston, South Carolina

I Was born in Charleston, South Carolina, and upon returning to Charleston in 2011,  I realized that the East side of town, which was predominantly black, is now occupied by a large percentage of white residents.

http://www.charlestoncitypaper.com/charleston/gentrification-breaks-a-neighborhood-down-from-the-inside-out/Content?oid=4615103.

http://www.thedigitel.com/arts-culture/gentrification-and-charlestons-shrinking-black-pop-35468-1118, http://paa2008.princeton.edu/papers/81623

I wondered what had happened to all of the black folks who owned or rented homes downtown.  Where do those displaced by whites now live?  Do they still live near the city?  Are they prospering and benefiting financially from the influx of tourism into the city, in ways other than working as housekeepers, bellmen, and servers in downtown hotels?

The look of downtown Charleston is totally different now since many of the homes have either been gutted and rebuilt, replaced by new construction, or renovated.  With structural upgrades, the fair market value of homes in areas once considered “poor and bad areas to live in,” or the ghetto, has increased with the presence of white residents, making it difficult for many blacks to continue to rent in the city, or to pay the higher taxes.

http://www.postandcourier.com/article/20110329/PC06/303299919

The City of Charleston has progressively grown in population and in the amount of businesses represented in the city.  Lower King Street has awakened from the dead with its streets lined with bars, restaurants, and the construction of the new hotels.  With the construction of new hotels on King street, businesses located on King Street will draw tourists who want the convenience of lodging in the heart of the city where the nightlife kicks off.

My question is, what is the percentage of blacks that have benefited from this economic growth? While the bold and vibrant colors painted on the renovated and newly constructed homes stand out as a proud representation of our community.  Do visitors to our city have the choice of patronizing a racially diverse group of business owners who represent the community?

http://www.psmag.com/navigation/business-economics/burgh-disapora/gentrification-not-about-race-and-class-64632/

http://www.charlestoncitypaper.com/charleston/will-the-midtown-redevelopment-be-a-nail-in-the-coffin-for-the-eastside/Content?oid=4126491

People native to Charleston who drive down streets like Huger Street, where I once lived, near Stuart Street, or Reid, Lee, and America Streets are no doubt as amazed as I am to see that once dilapidated houses in those areas have gotten a face lift.  While driving on the cross-town, visitors to the city see the beautiful colors of the houses off Carolina Street which draws attention to that neighborhood in an inviting manner, and people are relocating to Charleston in large numbers.

http://www.postandcourier.com/article/20140206/PC16/140209607

Because of the influx of people moving here, blacks who once lived on the East side of town, in homes that are within walking distance to schools, the aquarium, and government organizations, appear less in number while the population of whites walking downtown to work and entertainment and riding their bikes along bike paths, has increased.

Whites are now the predominant occupants of neighborhoods that were once stereotyped as “bad areas” to live in and ones labeled unsafe for them to walk in alone, especially at night.  But now you see whites walking in those once stereotyped “bad areas” all the time…and at night!  Those neighborhoods are now apparently safer since black residents have been replaced by a majority white presence.

http://www.crda.org/business/county_city_profiles/charleston_county.html

It is apparent that blacks are not prospering to a degree that they can afford to remain living in their neighborhoods once white people began to move in, and it appears that they are being pushed further North.  And blacks who have moved to the north area in locations that are considered run down and unsafe to travel by whites will be able to live in those areas until those neighborhoods are needed for the continued influx of new residents to Charleston.  It is already the case that white folks not able to live in the tightly meshed downtown area have begun to migrate North of the city.

I had hoped to see more integration in neighborhoods where blacks lived in the downtown area instead of gentrification.  There are black folks who had worked and lived downtown for the majority of their lives, and they still did not earn incomes comparable to whites on a large scale that afforded them the right to remain in those residences.

Because of income disparities, it places them in a position in which they can’t afford to remain in their neighborhoods with an influx of rents and taxes.  Unfortunately the growth that is taking place in Charleston is a story much like that of Harlem and the forced plight of blacks once Bill Clinton moved there. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/07/27/nyregion/thecity/27harl.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

http://www.nysun.com/new-york/harlem-residents-clinton-is-symbol/36435/.

The City of Charleston has grown into a City where more and more tourists are visiting from around the world, and that is an honor.  For the past three years the city has been the Conde Nast Traveler’s top tourist destination.  Not only is it an honor for the city, but for its mayor as well.   Mayor Riley is a fine person, but other than affordable housing for people relocating to this area, because many people who are from Charleston do not make enough to afford the affordable housing, the question remains.

Are black people being given an opportunity to earn a fair share of the economic pie?  Are black business owners given a fair opportunity to compete with white business owners?  Are they able to secure loans in which they can open businesses in key areas downtown where tourists frequent? http://www.cntraveler.com/daily-traveler/2013/10/charleston-south-carolina-number-one-city-in-the-united-states

Other than Taxi Cab Drivers, what is the percentage of black owned businesses in the downtown area in view of tourist traffic?  How many bars are black owned?  How many hotels?  How many black owned restaurants are on East Bay Street?  How many black owned businesses are on Market Street?

http://www.charlestonchronicle.net/64663/2152/new-app-finds-blackowned-businesses

It is unfortunate that blacks by large are not in a position to benefit financially through business ventures and the ownership of businesses in key geographical locations in the City of Charleston where an influx of tourism into the city produces wealth.  While there are a minority of blacks doing well financially in the City, blacks as a majority work minimum wage, or slightly above minimum wage type jobs.

Being the great historic city that Charleston is, it is unfortunate that little has changed over time when considering the distribution of wealth for blacks as compared to whites.  Is it the case that there a few blacks hand picked to represent the City, or is there a fair opportunity for inclusion?

http://www.postandcourier.com/article/20110329/PC06/303299919

I once drove a taxi in the City of Charleston and I would hear all the time how tourists love the people of Charleston.  As a woman native to Charleston, I was proud to hear that.  The people of Charleston are indeed accommodating, polite, hospitable, and most are genuine in their expressions of love towards people.  http://www.cntraveler.com/daily-traveler/2013/07/travel-us-cities-charleston-newark-branson-friendly-unfriendly_slideshow_item9_10

How do those compliments stack up in dollars and cents?  How do they stack up in earned income for blacks who clean, prep, cook, and sing songs for tourists in sweet shops to help keep the tourist industry booming?  I am referring to the service workers.  I would argue that it is their pictures that should be on the Carta Buses.  After all, they represent in greater numbers the cheap labor that keeps the streets clean, the horse manure scrapped up, and hotel lobbies sparkling.

It is the cheap labor provided by blacks educated in a school system in the South that provides just enough education to keep that labor pool of workers stocked and available for hire.  Good food, crisp linen, white towels and clean dishes and silverware.  That’s what tourists remember most about traveling.  And those services come from the back of the house.

http://www.cntraveler.com/readers-choice-awards/united-states/best-hotels-charleston-photos

This Blog was written with black folk in mind who are native to the City.  Those persons who have lived in Charleston their entire lives and have worked jobs that do not afford them the opportunity to eat in restaurants where they work let alone live downtown close to their jobs.

PRIMARY SOURCES:HUEY P. NEWTON FOUNDATION PAPERS


CATALOG SOURCE

HUEY P. NEWTON FOUNDATION PAPERS

DEPARTMENT OF SPECIAL COLLECTIONS

STANFORD UNIVERSITY

STANFORD, CALIFORNIA  94305 – 6004

Contact Administrator: Available Documents For Reference Use Only

1966

1.

LETTER FROM:

“JOHN F. DAVIS

OFFICE OF THE CLERK

BY MICHAEL RODAK JR.

DEPUTY CLERK

SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES

WASHINGTON, D. C.  20543

MARCH 8, 1966”

TO:

“MR. HUEY P. NEWTON

881- 47 TH STREET

OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA

RE:   NEWTON v. CALIFORNIA”

“ORDER EXTENDING TIME TO FILE PETITION FOR WRIT OF CERTIORARI”

“APRIL 10, 1966″

M864 BOX 27 FOLDER 7 HUEY P. NEWTON FOUNDATION PAPERS

2.

LETTER FROM:

” JOHN F. DAVIS

OFFICE OF THE CLERK

E. C. SCHADE ASSISTANT

SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES

WASHINGTON, D. C.  20543

APRIL 12, 1966″

RE:  NEWTON v. CALIFORNIA

TO:

HUEY P. NEWTON

881 47TH STREET

OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA ”

M864 BOX 27 FOLDER 7 HUEY P. NEWTON FOUNDATION PAPERS

1968

1.

“PAGE 4 SECTION A ** JULY 28, 1968 S. F. SUNDAY EXAMINER & CHRONICLE”

“BLACK – WHITE SOCIETY”

“FRUSTRATIONS OF OAKLAND MAYOR”

“BY FRANK PIAZZI, EAST BAY BUREAU”

HUEY P. NEWTON FOUNDATION PAPERS BOX 49 FOLDER 5

2.

“3/4/1968

“PERSONAL ATTENTION”

“SECRET FBI MEMORANDUM ON THE BLACK LIBERATION MOVEMENT”  (4 PAGES)

“FROM DIRECTOR, FBI

COUNTER INTELLIGENCE  PROGRAM (COINTELPRO)

GOALS”

HUEY P. NEWTON FOUNDATION PAPERS M864 BOX 5 FOLDER 1

3.

LETTER:

OCTOBER 4, 1968

“TO CHARLES GARY FROM EILEEN GRAMPP, IN APPRECIATION FOR EFFORTS ON BEHALF OF HUEY NEWTON”WORK .”

M864 BOX 28 FOLDER 6  HUEY P. NEWTON FOUNDATION PAPERS

4.

“RECEIVED AUG 16 1968”

LETTER TO CHARLES GARY

“DEAR NIGGER LOVER”

“KKK”

HUEY P. NEWTON FOUNDATION PAPERS M864 BOX 11 FOLDER 10

5.

LETTER ..

MARCH

“DEAR HUEY FROM GABRIELA FERNANDEZ”

M864 BOX 11 FOLDER 8  HUEY P. NEWTON FOUNDATION PAPERS

6.

LETTER “SEPTEMBER 20, 1968”

FROM:

“LAW OFFICES”

SCHEINMAN & SCHEINMAN

NORMAN L. SCHEINMAN OF COUNSEL”

TO:

“MR. CHARLES R. GARY

341 MARKET STREET

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA”

“RE: CONGRATULATIONS ON THE NEWTON CASE”

M864 BOX 27 FOLDER 7 HUEY P. NEWTON FOUNDATION PAPERS

1969

1.

“OFFICE MEMORANDUM ***UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT”

“TO SAC, LOS ANGELES (157-1618) DATE 7/11/69”

“SUBJECT BLACK PANTHER PARTY RACIAL MATTERS”

M864HUEY P. NEWTON FOUNDATION PAPERS BOX 5 FOLDER 1

2.

“7/2/69 MEMORANDUM  TO: SAC, SAN FRANCISCO”

“FROM: SAC, CHICAGO (100 – 40903-SUB J)”

“SUBJECT STUDENTS FOR A DEMOCRATIC SOCIETY (SDS) IS – SDS OD:CG”

M864 HUEY P. NEWTON FOUNDATION BOX 5 FOLDER 1

1970

1.

“5/11/70  SAC, SAN FRANCISCO, COUNTERINTELLIGENCE AND SPECIAL OPERATIONS (RESEARCH SECTION)”

“THE BUREAU WOULD LIKE TO OFFER FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION A PROPOSAL FOR A DISRUPTIVE-DISINFORMATION OPERATION TARGETED AGAINST THE NATIONAL OFFICE OF THE BLACK PANTHER PARTY (BBP).” pp 102, 104.

M864 HUEY P. NEWTON FOUNDATION RECORDS BOX 36 FOLDER 1

2.

“NOVEMBER 8, 1970, LETTER TO HUEY P. NEWTON’S LAWYER CHARLES GARY”

“…..UNITED STATES CITIZENS WILL NOT TOLERATE ANY OF YOUR TACTICS WE ARE SICK AND TIRED OF IT- SO JUST TAKE IT EASY – AND IF YOU DON’T WATCH OUT.”

M864 HUEY P. NEWTON FOUNDATION PAPERS BOX 28 FOLDER 4

1972

1.

LETTER

“CONGRESS OF THE UNITED STATES”

“HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES”

“WASHINGTON, D. C. 20515”

“MAY 5, 1972”

TO: “HUEY P. NEWTON”

FROM: “CHARLES B. RANGEL”

“MEMBER OF CONGRESS”

M864 BOX 1 FOLDER 2 HUEY P. NEWTON FOUNDATION PAPERS

2.

LETTER “APRIL 17, 1972”

TO:

“HUEY P. NEWTON

SERVANT OF THE PEOPLE

CENTRAL COMMITTEE

BLACK PANTHER PARTY

1048 PERALTA STREET

OAKLAND, CALIFORNIA  94607”

FROM:

“HONORABLE ROBERT  N. C. NIX

U.S. CONGRESSMAN

SECOND DISTRICT, PENNSYLVANIA

CUSTOMS HOUSE

PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA  19106”

M864 BOX 1 FOLDER 2 HUEY P. NEWTON FOUNDATION PAPERS

3.

LETTER “MAY 31, 1972″

CONGRESS OF THE UNITED STATES

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

WASHINGTON D. C.  20515

LOUIS STOKES

MEMBER OF CONGRESS”

TO:

“HUEY P. NEWTON

SERVANT OF THE PEOPLE”

“RE: THE BLACK PANTHER INTER-COMMUNAL NEWS SERVICE: A SURVIVAL PROGRAM IN CONGRESS”

M864 BOX 1 FOLDER 2 HUEY P. NEWTON FOUNDATION PAPERS


First Lady Mrs. Michelle Obama and Eleanor Roosevelt: Bullying


ELEANOR ROOSEVELT

“Mrs. Roosevelt used her lectures, her radio talk shows, her column and articles, her  press conferences, and her endless travels throughout America to publicize her views on social justice, and to help bring the White House closer to the American people.”

“The most outspoken of First Ladies, she became a powerful advocate for the weak and disadvantaged in American society for blacks and other minorities, for tenant farmers, the unemployed, the hungry, and the homeless, for all those who had no platform or spokesperson of their own.”  (104)

“Anyone who has gone through great suffering is bound to have greater sympathy and understanding of the problems of mankind.”

Eleanor Roosevelt

One of the most ruthless forms of bullying was the lynching of children, women and men.  1800’s to 1950’s.

“One can, even without any particular gifts, overcome obstacles that seem insurmountable if one is willing to face the fact that they must overcome; That, in spite of timidity and fear, in spite of a lack of special talents, one can find a way to live widely and fully.” 

Eleanor Roosevelt

Art in Memory of Women Lynched in America

  “You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face…you must do the thing you think you can not do.” Eleanor Roosevelt

http://www.stopbullying.gov/at-risk/factors/

“Looking back it strikes me that my childhood and my early youth were one long battle against fear.”

Eleanor Roosevelt

http://www.kidspeace.org/healing.aspx?id=2510

 “If anyone were to ask me what I want out of life I would say—-The opportunity for doing something useful, for in no other way, I am convinced, can true happiness be attained.”

Eleanor Roosevelt

 “Life has got to be lived.. that’s all there is to it.”

Eleanor Roosevelt

http://www.selfgrowth.com/articles/you-can-live-with-a-bully

Art in memory of women lynched in America

“Because Eleanor Roosevelt never hesitated to take a stand, she made enemies as well as friends.  Eleanor was often branded a “Socialite” or a “Communist.”   But the most savage attack came from those who were enraged that the First Lady of the land would speak out against segregation.  They spread nasty rumors about her personal habits and social life, and they warned that her views on civil rights would ignite violent confrontations between blacks and whites.” (111, 112).

http://www.cnn.com/2012/10/31/living/bullying-fight-back/

“Women, whether subtlety, or vociferously, have always been a tremendous power in the destiny of the world.”

Eleanor Roosevelt

http://www.thefriendshipblog.com/why-are-women-so-mean-each-other/

“Eleanor’s admirers saw her as an inspirational figure, a woman of compassion who listened with sympathy and understanding to the concerns of ordinary people.  They marveled at her honesty, her energy, and her independent stance as a woman making a mark on the world.” (112, 113).

First Lady Michelle Obama and President Barack Obama, the mother and father of two daughters, make their mark on the world.

White House Bullying Convention

BLOGS FROM

Historiann

Lessons for Girls

http://academiccog.blogspot.com/2009/07/lessons-for-girls-dont-just-ask-insist.html

SOURCES:
RUSSELL FREEDMAN, ELEANOR ROOSEVELT: A LIFE OF DISCOVERY
ROBIN GERBER:  LEADERSHIP THE ELANOR ROOSEVELT WAY

BULLYING EFFECTS ALL AGE LEVELS


“People Who Practice Racism are Bereft.

There is Something Distorted About the psyche

“Toni Morrison

This blog, and the art that I draw, has been inspired by the story of Mary Turner.  Mrs. Turner was lynched in Valdosta Georgia,  at the age of twenty-one years old, while she was eiight months pregnant.  I heard her unbelievable story in my senior year, while taking a history seminar on terrorism, taught by professor Jelani Cobb, at Rutgers University, in 2011.

.

 

FREEDMAN’S COTTAGES IN CHARLESTON, SOUTH CAROLINA: JENKINS FAMILY HISTORY


FREEDMAN’S COTTAGES IN CHARLESTON, SOUTH CAROLINA: JENKINS FAMILY HISTORY.