……Unless you know where you’ve been.”
Reading this AM about this incredible lady, Amelia Boynton Robinson, pictured here, beaten unconscious on Bloody Sunday (subject of Selma).
Today, she is 103:
and too old to travel from her home in Alabama to LA for the premiere of the movie, so Paramount brought the movie to HER. High five, Paramount. I love it when you can really feel the humanity behind a movie. From her CNN interview:
“I was brought up by people who loved others,” she says. “I love people. We had no animosity. We had no feeling that we hate anyone.” And there was yet another factor. People are not born racists, she says. They are trained to become that way. That’s what happened to the white people she confronted in Alabama 50 years ago.
She believes she has lived so long because God intended it that way. That she is not through talking to young people and setting them on the right track. Until a few years ago, she was still standing on her feet giving speeches. America, she says, has made great strides. She beams at the fact that a black man serves as her president and is considered the most powerful man on Earth. A framed photograph of Barack Obama hangs on her wall, as does a letter from him expressing warm wishes for her 103rd birthday. But this nation still has a long way to go in dealing with race, she says. She’s been keeping up with the news of the past few months — Michael Brown’s killing in Ferguson, Missouri. Eric Garner’s in New York. Tamir Rice’s in Cleveland. They take her back to a time she knew before, back to Jim Crow. She says a whole new generation has been stirred by these cases of police killings. She hopes young people will pick up the reins of a struggle her generation launched. All her life, she has been extremely proud of her roots, a mixture of African slaves, Cherokee Indians and Europeans. But if you ask her about her race, she is apt to answer like this: “I am a member of the human race.”