February 8 in History

via Alexis:

It’s February 8th. Today marks the 45th anniversary of the Orangeburg Massacre, the first incident on a U.S. college campus in which unarmed student protesters were killed. South Carolina highway patrol men opened fire on a group of students protesting the segregation of a local bowling alley, killing three and injuring 27 others.

One of the students shot that night was my father, Joe Lambright.

This incident pre-dated the Kent State Massacre of 1970, but got little to no media coverage. It has since been incorporated into the curriculum in SC, which is a big step, but there’s still some work needing to be done. This is American history. More Americans need to know about it.

She’s right; nobody talks about this and more people should know it happened. Here’s more info.

We’ve come a long way as a country with segregation. But, even though it’s not always explicit or across racial lines anymore, it still exists. Stand up to it, America.

On December 2, Basque athlete Iván Fernández Anaya was competing in a cross-country race in Burlada, Navarre. He was running second, some distance behind race leader Abel Mutai – bronze medalist in the 3,000-meter steeplechase at the London Olympics. As they entered the finishing straight, he saw the Kenyan runner – the certain winner of the race – mistakenly pull up about 10 meters before the finish, thinking he had already crossed the line.

Fernández Anaya quickly caught up with him, but instead of exploiting Mutai’s mistake to speed past and claim an unlikely victory, he stayed behind and, using gestures, guided the Kenyan to the line and let him cross first.

(Read more)

Good sportsmanship. Winning isn’t everything.

Give me an artistic license so I can sing to my captors in Syria. Let me embroider an eiderdown pillow for the Rutgers gay student to fall onto under the George Washington Bridge. Let me create a magic dragon with a special cape to protect the young unarmed black teenage boy in Florida before he is shot point blank and killed. Let me make a painted shield of protective wildflowers for the 3 Jewish children and their rabbi father killed by the madman in Paris. If a work of art can bring awareness towards changing these horrors let us begin the act of creativity now – It is not too soon!

Karen Finley, performance artist and activist, in a speech made on March 21, 2012 at the opening of Because Dreaming Is Best Done In Public: Creative Time In Public Spaces, which features her 1998 work 1-800-ALL-KAREN.

Words can’t describe how moved I was both emotionally and towards action, and those sentiments were widely present throughout the room. It’s incredible how people can wield words into powerful tools to, in all seriousness, change the world.

Karen, by the power vested in my by nature of existence, I grant you artistic license to keep using your voice to creatively shape public discourse and influence society’s actions.

Announcing First Ever Brooklyn Neighborhood Reports

The Center for the Study of Brooklyn at Brooklyn College and the Brooklyn Community Foundation are pleased to release the first ever Brooklyn Neighborhood Reports.  Over 600 pages in total, each of the 19 new reports- one for each of the borough’s 18 Community Districts, and one for all of Brooklyn- include over 90 indicators that explore 9 different theme areas.  Accompanying Data Tablesprovide even greater detail, as will the forthcoming Data NotesRead the official January 2012 launch announcement here.  

These are pretty cool! Can’t wait to dive in further, but my initial thought is that I love the metrics they picked to explore and how they present it all. No reports or statistics are ever without questions or flaws, but this is a really nicely pieced together snapshot of all things Brooklyn. Well done!

Announcing First Ever Brooklyn Neighborhood Reports