In the early 1900’s, the Greenwood District in Tulsa, Oklahoma was commonly referred to as the ‘Black Wall Street’. It was a predominantly African American town that was booming due to the nearby discovery of oil. It was a wonderful place to live, work and raise a family – but that all changed on May 31, 1921. In a matter of hours, the town was burnt to ashes and its estimated that up to 300 people were murdered. Historian Scott Ellsworth tells the largely untold story of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre.
Segregation not only divides cities but leads to divided people as well. It fuels biases against people who may look or act different than us, leading to generations of inequity and discrimination. Viewpoints speaks with social justice activist, Tonika Johnson about the many impacts’ segregation has had on the city of Chicago.
International influence is pervasive in today’s interconnected, social media-driven world. Swedish author Elisabeth Åsbrink joins Viewpoints to discuss how her home country of Sweden has changed in recent years, and the perception of the country versus the reality of what’s happening within its borders.
Racial segregation still persists throughout the U.S. One factor contributing to this inequality is the structure of our towns and cities. Richard Rothstein and Tonika Johnson talk about how past laws and our government created a divided demographic and the impact this has on certain populations.
We’ve all heard stories of segregated America circa the 1950’s, but historian and author James W. Loewen says not all of those racist institutions have been completely eliminated, even now. Loewen explains ‘sundown towns,’ towns where minorities were not welcomed after sundown, and he says some of them are still unofficially ‘sundown’ due to their lasting reputations.