WPCNR STREET STRAIGHT. June 10, 2014:
Juneteenth 2014 — the celebration of the freeing of the slaves by President Abaraham Lincoln in 1863, when the news was finally received in Texas in 1865, will be commemorated in White Plains Saturday with the 10th Annual Juneteenth parade which is honoring Civil Rights Freedom Riders as Grand Marshalls.
The parade takes place between 12 and 2 PM Saturday on Mamaroneck Avenue, followed by a Street Festival on Court Street from 1 to 6 P.M.the by all walks and creeds of life today at the annual Juneteenth parade in White Plains.
For those of you who do not know of the Freedom Riders story, a handful of white and black activists were organized by the Congress of Racial Equality to take buses into the Deep South to end whites-only segregation in bus terminals. The Freedom Rides began when 13 African-American and white activists departed Washington, D.C. May 4, 1961. , in a risk-fraught effort to end whites only segregation in bus terminals in the Deep South.
They tried to use “Whites-only” restrooms, ordered at whites served only lunch counters attempted to integrate facilities at bus terminals along the way into the Deep South. African-American Freedom Riders tried to use “whites-only” restrooms and lunch counters, and white freedom riders entered “Colored Only” rest-rooms and “Colored only” serving areas.vice versa. White protestors assaulted and afflicted the riders with violance along the pilgramage, and the televised and newspaper press coverage harrowingly depicted the ugly face of segregation the Negro had to deal with across the South to the world.
The Freedom Riders’ willingness to suffer beatings, arrests, and God knows what, unarmed, unafraid, at the mercy of the worst, so shamed America that 4 months later In September 1961, the Interstate Commerce Commission outlawed segregation in bus terminas and railroad stations across the country.
The 1961 Freedom Rides took insipiration from the 1947 Journey of Reconciliation crusade. That effort was the first time African-American and white bus riders tested the 1946 U.S. Supreme Court decision in Morgan v. Virginia that segregated bus seating was unconstitutional. The 1961 Freedom Rides sought to test a 1960 decision by the Supreme Court in Boynton v. Virginia that segregation of interstate transportation facilities, including bus terminals, was unconstitutional.
Dan Seidel suggested to WPCNR Wednesday that the 1964 murders of a 21-year black man, James Chaney from Philadelphia, Mississippi, and two Jewish civil rights activists Andrew Goodman, 20, and 24 year-old Michael Schwerner who came to Mississippi to register voters should be included among the unarmed, and extremely brave crusaders for truth justice and the American Way who died for it.
Seidel wrote WPCNR: “These kids deserve memorializing for their efforts – they added to the national conscious.This should be taught to the kids in schools. Some people gave all for the rights of others – the fight being at home.”
The three were murdered by a conspiracy between the Ku Klux Klan and the Nashoba County, Mississippi police. Borgna Brunner has written a chilling account of how these three men were murdered and the subsequent arrests and prosecutions. You can read the story of this shameful cold blooded hate crime here– a distinctly “American” hate crime :