Why are we fighting to undo all our racial progress?
· · Nov 20, 2021 · NottheBee.com

Sunday was the anniversary of one of the more remarkable acts of civilian heroism in our country's history; one made even more extraordinary by the fact that it was accomplished by a 6-year-old girl. Immortalized in Norman Rockwell's iconic painting "The Problem We All Live With," little Ruby Bridges struck a blow for desegregation, civil rights, and racial equality on November 14, 1960 by walking under the escort of federal marshals into a white elementary school in New Orleans.

Ruby's courage at just 6-years-old is astounding – facing shouts, slurs, and the devastating knowledge that none of her peers wanted to go to school with her, yet pushing forward. But the bravery wasn't confined to just Ruby. Imagine being the white woman, Barbara Henry, who ignored the mob to teach the young girl that year and, as Ruby put it, "show me her heart."

Imagine being her parents, having every confidence that you were taking the righteous position, yet simultaneously fearing for the safety of your precious baby girl every day. I doubt seriously that I could have exhibited their strength or fortitude.

Reading and remembering accounts like Ruby's makes our society's current direction relative to race relations all the more depressing. In increasing measure, it seems the very ends that heroes like Ruby Bridges struggled to achieve are being abandoned and deserted. Consider that six decades after a 6-year-old child broke the barrier of racial segregation, a modern generation seeks to rebuild it.

Of course, it goes well beyond the situation with segregated campuses. Gone are the voices of racial reconciliation, replaced with those that actually assert that the cure for racism is more racism:

"The only remedy to past discrimination is present discrimination. The only remedy to present discrimination is future discrimination." – Ibram X. Kendi

In a society that has replaced Bridges with Kendi in its collective social conscience, it's no surprise that casual, open racism is not only tolerated, but celebrated on platforms of national prominence:

Truthfully, I don't know where Ruby Bridges is these days, though I pray she is happy, healthy, and living a blessed and fulfilled life. It is possible that like others who have every reason to know better, she too has been coopted by a movement that is undermining everything she and countless other civil rights champions fought to achieve… but I sure hope not.

I hope she is equally disgusted with the current resurgence of racial discrimination, pro-segregation activism, divisive race-baiting, and media-fueled ethnic hatred that currently darkens our national dialogue – the very evil that once met its match in a brave 6-year-old girl.


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