Little Known BLACK HEROES Who Made History

I’d like to see these three African Americans appear in our history books.

“You have the ability to change something each day of your life. Believe it or not, people, it can’t happen without you.”    – Lynda Blackmon Lowery 

Lynda Blackmon Lowery

An amazing hero was a fourteen year old teenage girl who took part in the Selma bridge crossing.  For her it was truly a Bloody Sunday. A sheriff beat her so badly that she required  28 stitches in her back of her head and seven over her eye. She still has a scar over her eye. Her name is Lynda Blackmon Lowery.  She had such strength, that she recovered from her injuries and went on the March to Washington in August of the same year. Ms. Lowery has written a book called, Turning 15 On The Road To Freedom: My Story of the 1965 Selma Voting Rights March.  Watch what she had to say on youtube:

Claudette Colvin

Nine months before Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat to a white woman, fifteen year old Claudette Colvin protested in Montgomery, AL. She took the bus home from her high school on March 2, 1955. On that day when the bus driver ordered her to get up, she refused and said that since she had paid the fare, it was her constitutional right to stay put. Two police officers cuffed arrested her and put her in jail. She was so frightened in jail she started crying. Then she said the Lord’s Prayer to calm herself.  After her arrest she was shunned by her own community.

Claudette Colvin is also important because she challenged the law in court as one of four women plaintiffs in Browder v. Gayle, the court case that successfully overturned bus segregation laws in Montgomery and Alabama.

Rosa Parks is still very important to American History and her story should still be told, but Claudette Colvin’s story should be more widely known, too. Part of the reason Colvin was forgotten is she moved to New York City and did not tell her story. Now her story is being told in: Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice by Phil Hoose.

Bass Reeves

A few weeks ago, I learned about a man named Bass Reeves who was probably the real inspiration for the “Lone Ranger”. He was a marshal in the Oklahoma area who brought more than 4,000 felons to justice. Bass spoke an Indian language, probably which he learned from the Seminole, and he had an Indian partner.  Bass Reeves was an African American and a former slave.

Learn more about him at http://www.npr.org the show “All Things Considered” from 2/14/2015.  The segment was called: “‘Strange Fruit’ Uncelebrated Quintessentially American Stories”

new leaf

turning over a new leaf

These are three individuals who you probably won’t find in an American History book. WHY?  Why is it that even today we still do NOT have completely integrated US history. Most high school history books are still predominantly about white males in US history. Isn’t it time to turn over a new leaf? Isn’t it time to give VOICE to all the important people in our American History and NOT base who is included in it by their skin color or whether they are a man or a woman?

“A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin, and culture is like a tree without roots.”   – Marcus Garvey

 

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CONFUSED and CONFUSION

Nature where I live is a bit confused. Daffodils are blooming, crocuses are blooming, and it is just mid February!

Crocuses mid 2/2015

Confused Crocuses mid 2/2015

daffodils 2/2015

Confused Daffodils mid 2/2015

Being confused is not bad.  Even these daffodils are telling us something about our weather which we need to be aware of and act upon.

On a personal level, when I am confused – it doesn’t always feel good, but it is a sign to me that I need to check-into my own well-being, and investigate what is going on in my life and with myself. It also might mean, I need to “lighten up” and let go.

History and experience tell us that moral progress comes not in comfortable and complacent times, but out of trial and CONFUSION.”  – Gerald R. Ford

flowering fruit tree

Confused flowering fruit tree mid 2/2015

The turmoil and confusion of the Civil War, the Civil Rights Movement, Civil Rights Act, and the Women’s Movement brought us positive change in the past. Now the confusion around Climate Change and the Living Wage Movement are bringing into question scientific evidence, social justice, and equity issues in the USA. Thank you, CONFUSION!

This TED talk  creates a humorous atmosphere of confusion by Reggie Watt; it is called metamodernism:

 

Daphne bush

Confused Daphne bush mid 2/2015

My last thoughts about why confusion can be helpful and useful:

When we humans are open to others and confused, it is harder for us to be arrogant, and we are more likely to surrender control. Thus, we tend to be more open to learning something new, asking for help, and are more willing to work with others. These are some behaviors that this planet could use a lot of.

snowbells

Confused Snowbells mid 2/2015

“I pretty much try to stay in a constant state of confusion just because of the expression it leaves on my face.”  

  –   Johnny Depp

 

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Love is Love

I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where. I love you simply, without problems or pride: I love you in this way because I do not know any other way of loving but this, in which there is no I or you, so intimate that your hand upon my chest is my hand, so intimate that when I fall asleep your eyes close.” 

Pablo Neruda, 100 Love Sonnets

The heart cares for who it does, particularly when it concerns  who each one of us chooses to love romantically.

heart from necklace

The loving heart

We can tie our heart to our emotions, and our brain plays a very active role, too. I found this explanation very helpful:

http://centerforwholeselfhealth.com/the-heart-brain-connection-the-role-of-emotions/

Naturally, one of the strongest emotions we humans feel is LOVE. For me this love has no gender or skin color barriers. Love is love.  As far as I am concerned, I have NOTHING to say about who other people love.  Not my business.

The movie, “THE LOVING STORY” from 2011 is a documentary from HBO, which tells the difficult journey Mildred and Richard Loving, an interracial couple, had to endure to be married. Before 1967 it was NOT possible for interracial couples to marry in every state in the USA. The Loving’s fight clear to the Supreme Court made it possible for all interracial couples to marry in every state of the USA.

Now 37 states have legalized same-sex marriage. I am thankful that these changes are happening for all people in most states across the USA.

full moon

full moon bringing light to darkness

As a human family we are coming out of the darkness in regards to love. To me, that is human progress which I celebrate this upcoming Valentine’s Day!

 

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CHANGE

“There is nothing PERMANENT except CHANGE.” –

Heraclitus (535 BC-475 BC)

January 2015

January 2014

With things in our world such as the weather, change is very obvious.

January 2015

January 2015

Also with the changing seasons, sometimes we humans witness and accept other changes readily. Other times we are less accepting.

Queen Anne's lace

Queen Anne’s lace Summer 2014

In the late spring and summer, Queen Anne’s lace or wild carrot grows wild where I take walks frequently. It is near the end of summer, and you can see that some of it is already starting to change (in the far right corner)

Queen Ann'e lace fall

Queen Anne’s lace in the fall

In the late fall Queen Anne’s lace looks like this.

Sometimes I start feeling a little sad when the fall ends because I love that season and the changes in the leaves. My attachment to keeping even the seasons from changing brings on my own sadness, as if I could logically stop or control winter from coming! So when I resist change I CREATE my own suffering.

The present moment
contains past and future.
The secret of transformation,
is in the way we handle this very moment.” –

Thich Nhat Hanh

Believe me, I have tried to stop other changes in my life in the past. I have suffered until I finally surrendered and started to accept changes over time.

opening rose

opening rose

Since becoming more willing to embrace change and be less controlling, I have become happier and learned more about myself. I have become open to new possibilities, and my life has been opening like a flower. With practice and some guidance, living in the moment and accepting change without fear has become more possible for me now.

When we humans are unable to embrace change, particularly with how we treat and accept ourselves and each other, this old saying applies to us:

“The more things change, the more they are the same.”  – Alphonse Karr  (1808-1890)

A hopeful “antidote” to Karr’s view about changing human behavior might be this TED Talk by B.J. Fogg.

How do you deal with CHANGE?

 

 

 

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