“The Conversation” Continues – conference in Orlando, FL on 11/9/2012

The deep and rich conversation on racial truth and reconciliation work we engaged in Newnan, GA, is moving to Central Florida in November of 2012 with a conference titled “Hidden Stories of Rights Denied” that will focus on several key Florida lynchings and other events such as Harry T. Moore’s death, the Ocoee massacre, Rosewood, Groveland, and much more.   One of the unique things about the even is a bus tour of some of the actual lynching and memorial sites where we will learn and conduct memorialization activities.

Register and join us for this rich 3-day event.   Call 800-250-4645 to register.

Duluth, MN has it going on!

We spent a day with the organizers of the Clayton, Jackson, McGhie Memorial project in Duluth this week, and have to say, hands down, they have pulled off one of the most exception racial violence commemoration projects ever.

When you stand in the beautiful civic space that this community created, with its timeless words of inspiration and proud bronzed statues, you just feel so damn proud to know that this work is happening and can really deliver the blessings of community and reconciliation.

More importantly, they used their work as a springboard to launch an ongoing conversation in the Duluth community, and to continue the work of racial justice.  Democracy Forum can do the same.

Their latest effort, the Unfair campaign, which is stirring up quite an interest (both positive and negative) is a beautiful testament to their ongoing commitment and integrity.

Bravo Duluth, we’re inspired.

ATRR conference wrap up

What a weekend.  All the groups who presented, the food, the music, the new friends we made, and most powerful of all, the march we joined today arm in arm with our brothers and sisters, leading from the Newnan, GA courthouse steps to the site of the 1898 Sam Hose lynching where we prayed, remembered and celebrated the life of all those lost to such senseless mob violence.

Special thanks to Brother Thee Smith who led us in benediction and much song, and to Waymond Mundy for, well, just being Waymond, and to everyone else too, whose names may be listed here, but who all left their impression on our hearts.  We’ll miss everyone, and look forward to a gathering again in 2016, perhaps in Duluth, MN!

Midday Report from Truth and Reconciliation Conference in Newnan, GA

Wow.  In a word, “wow”.  I never fail to be humbled, amazed, inspired and outraged by the sharing at these conferences.  This year’s event no exception.   Morning conversation around historical reenactments of traumatic history was great.  It shed some light on the history of reenactments and even told the story of the Charleston, SC gathering of newly freed ex-slaves, creating a huge mock slave auction.  Amazing.

check out their website at www.atrr.org

Interview with Francina Boykin

Conversation between two Democracy Forum founders, Francina Boykin and Curtis Michelson, on the evening of March 21st, 2012.  Recorded in Ms. Boykin’s home, the two recall the founding of the group and the impacts it had on the consciousness of the local community.

Francina also provides rich details of Central Florida life and struggle as she chronicles her own family stories; such as her grandfather’s near lynching for labor organizing in Apopka in the 1940’s.

Francina Boykin Interview

file is in MP3 format (64MB)