Why do they have to keep talking about it?

Listening to and watching the coverage of the commemoration of the Tulsa 1921 massacre, I recalled the number of times I’ve heard people express impatience with the recounting of incidents from the past. It goes something like, “Why do they have to keep talking about it?”
My response is, “When you admit it happened.” In some cases, “I would add, “And that you did it.”


  1. 伟思礼 says:

    This particular atrocity is something I had NOT heard anyone talk about ever until this year. I learned of it a few years ago just because I do a lot of poking around in history. I lived in Tulsa ten years without hearing of it. My mother lived there twenty years, her parents more than forty years, and her grandparents lived there during it, and none of them ever mentioned it.

    1. Pat Barrett says:

      Having read some hundred books and more on Black history, I can point a many facts, factoids, incidents, perspectives, people and so on whose existence most people do not know about. I think I’ve blogged somewhere about the two Black doctors who were sure they had come across an “unknown” chapter of Black history, that of the Amistad. Their enthusiasm was so great and my certainty they would never get around to doing anything about it that I did not point out that the Amistad case was an important legal case that had been covered, but because it was about Africans, no one picked it up to make a movie about it or any other mass media effort. It’s like the fact that some 50 Africans purchased as slaves were landed on an island in the Mississippi River at Mobile, AL in 1862, the last known delivery of slaves and there is a whole book on it. But when you are spending your time bringing babies into the world and caring for them, you may not browse libraries. So it’s not just uncovering people and events, it’s getting them into mass circulation.

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