Today in “Hidden” History

Today in “Hidden” History is a daily listing of important but little-known events illustrating the range of innovators, contributors, or incidents excluded from formal history lessons or common knowledge. Hidden history is intended not as an exhaustive review, but merely as an illustration of how popular narratives "hide" many matters of fundamental importance. Bookmark this page and check daily to quickly expand your knowledge. Suggest entries for Today in “Hidden” History by clicking the Contact Us link. Entries for August 05:

1938Theologian James Hal Cone, best known for his advocacy of Black theology and Black liberation theology, is born. His 1969 book Black Theology and Black Power provided a new way to comprehensively define the distinctiveness of theology in the Black church. His message was that Black Power, defined as Black people asserting the humanity that white supremacy denied, was the gospel in America. Jesus came to liberate the oppressed, advocating the same thing as Black Power. He argued that white American churches preached a gospel based on white supremacy, antithetical to the gospel of Jesus. Cone's work was influential from the time of the book's publication, and his work remains influential today. His work has been both used and critiqued inside and outside the African-American theological community. He was the Charles Augustus Briggs Distinguished Professor of Systematic Theology at Columbia University-affiliated Union Theological Seminary until his death. Learn more.
1953The nearly decade-long cycle of anti-Black riots in the Chicago Housing Authority’s (CHA) Trumbull Park Homes is ignited, as white residents attack the home of Betty Howard with rocks and fireworks, with police doing little to stop them. The attacks continued for weeks, and recurred over years.  Trumbull Park is a public housing project located in the South Deering neighborhood on the Far-South Side of Chicago, Illinois. Built in 1938, it consists of 55 buildings and 434 apartments. CHA had moved Ms. Howard and her family into the project — the first African Anerican family to reside in Trumbull Park — six days before, on July 30. In October 1953, the CHA decided to move 10 more Black families in, sparking a new wave of violence. It was not until 1963 that Blacks could go to the neighborhood park without police protection. Learn more.
1969The Atlanta Police Department leads a police raid on a screening of the film Lonesome Cowboys at a movie theater in Atlanta, Georgia. The raid targeted members of the city's Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trangender, Queer, and other gender 0r sexually non-conforming (LGBTQ+) communities. The aftermath of the raid let to the creation of the Georgia Gay Liberation Front and an increased push for gay liberation in the area. The event has been compared to New York City's Stonewall Riots, which occurred a little over a month before the raid. Atlanta Pride, one of the largest pride parades in the United States, was started in part as a response to the raid. Learn more.
2012Six people are killed in a racially motivated attack at Sikh Temple in Wisconsin. A white man named Wade Michael Page opened fire on worshippers at a Sikh Temple in Oak Creek, Wisconsin, killing six people and seriously injuring several others before taking his own life. Between 30 and 35 people, including several children, were inside the temple that morning as community members prepared for their usual Sunday services. The investigation revealed images of Mr. Page wearing a “white power” shirt and posing in front of Nazi flags, which he had posted to public social media pages. The six people killed in the attack were Sita Singh, Ranjit Singh, Satwant Singh Kaleka, Prakash Singh, Suveg Singh, and Paramjit Kaur Saini. Baba Punjab Singh, a priest at the temple, initially survived a gunshot wound to the head that left him paralyzed; he died from his injuries in 2020. After 9/11, crimes against South Asian, Muslim, and Arab Americans became more common. Sikh men in particular, who often wear turbans, increasingly became victims of racial profiling and racialized attacks. Learn more.
2014John Crawford III, a 22-year-old African-American man, is shot and killed by a police officer in a Walmart store in Beavercreek, Ohio, near Dayton, while he was holding a BB gun that was for sale in the store. The shooting was captured on surveillance video and led to protests from groups including the NAACP and the Black Lives Matter movement. Police officers initially claimed Crawford did not respond to verbal commands to drop the BB gun and lie on the ground, and eventually began to move as if trying to escape. However, the store's security video shows Crawford talking on his cell phone while holding the BB/Pellet air rifle and that the police officer fired almost immediately after entering the store and sighting Crawford holding the BB gun. A grand jury declined to indict the two officers involved on criminal charges. The City of Beavercreek eventually settled civil claims for wrongful death brought by Crawford's estate and family. Learn more.

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2021 Truth & Reconciliation Conversations (TRC) Global Summit

July 18, 2021 @ 12:00 pm July 19, 2021 @ 2:00 pm EDT

Racism is one of the most urgent challenges facing humanity. Through truthful conversations, we can begin to navigate this challenge, paving the way to better understand one another. The 2021 Truth & Reconciliation Conversations (TRC) Global Summit will provide a blueprint for how these conversations can take place, using five key commitments to guide us: Compassionate Empathy, Courageous Listening, Painful Conversations, Social Reckoning and Spiritual Reconciliation.  read more

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Ridgefield Allies Urges RPS Participation in Open Choice Program

With unanimous agreement of Ridgefield Allies Board of Directors, the following letter has been submitted to the Ridgefield Board of Education and to Ridgefield Public Schools (RPS)Superintendent Dr. Susie Da Silva, recommending that RPS participate in the state-funded Open Choice program. Please share our letter and contact BOE and Dr Da Silva to encourage participation. read more

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Allies: Songs of Struggle

A month-long playlist celebrating the intersection of music and activism for June.

In observance of June as African-American Music Appreciation Month and LGBTQ+ Pride Month, and of World Music Day on June 21, Ridgefield Allies is celebrating music as it intersects with activism. Check in with us each day of June as we reveal each new entry in our month-long playlist and highlight that song’s importance in the struggle for social justice. read more

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100 Years Ago: Tulsa Race Massacre

The Tulsa Race Massacre took place on May 31 and June 1, 1921, in Tulsa, Oklahoma. In what some historians have called “the single worst incident of racial violence in American history,” residents and businesses of Tulsa’s predominantly Black Greenwood District were attacked on the ground and from the air (private aircraft dropped homemade firebombs) by white mobs who deeply resented the financial prosperity of the residents of what was then known as the “Black Wall Street.” The proximate trigger for the incident was the sensationalist Tulsa Tribune newspaper’s exaggerated and fabricated report of an alleged assault of a young white woman by a young black man; the alleged assault was never substantiated, the alleged victim declined to press charges, and local investigators later speculated that the young man had merely accidentally bumped into the young woman. In less than 18 hours, at least 1,000 homes and businesses were destroyed, hundreds of African Americans were killed, and an estimated 6,000 to 10,000 African Americans were left homeless. read more

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Memorial Day: Shared Losses, Obligations

On Memorial Day we honor and mourn all who gave their lives in service in the United States Armed Forces. Though it is common to celebrate Memorial Day as the start of the summer season with picnics and parades, at its core this holiday is a solemn remembrance of those lost and of the Gold Star families who survived them. read more

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Video: May 25 Twilight Vigil

Ridgefield Allies thanks members of our community for joining the Twilight Vigil in Ballard Park on the evening of May 25, 2021. May your participation and sharing inspire friends, neighbors, and acquaintances across our lovely town.

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