From the Detroit Riot to the Malcolm Summit

By Shabazz, Betty | Ebony, November 1995 | Go to article overview

From the Detroit Riot to the Malcolm Summit


Shabazz, Betty, Ebony


The history of America makes it impossible for African-American children, however "sheltered," to escape the psychic legacy of discrimination and racism, even when they escape the physical aspects of racism. This psychic legacy was ever-present and although it was not openly discussed, it was manifested historically in the geographical area of my Detroit childhood. The impact, however, was not as destructive or penetrating due to my support network (parents, church and a host of other built-in structures). Race relations were not discussed and it was hoped that by denying the existence of race problems, the problems would go away. Anyone who openly discussed race relations was quickly viewed as a "troublemaker."

According to history, the published record and information passed down in the community, in the `40s and `50s, African-American families worked to provide a stable family life, establishing the virtues of work, education and religion in the life of young people, although the times were difficult. My father always bragged about being a good family man and how he worked hard and saved his money and bought a house at the height of the Depression--a lesson in management he learned while a student at Tuskegee Institute (now Tuskegee University). My father felt that if he could profit from an education, others could as well.

Two conflicts served as the reference points for my belief in the necessity of "lifting myself and maintaining my own humanity." The first was a conflict that escalated into a riot and is still talked about today. This occurred when the first Black families attempted to move into Detroit's Sojourner Truth Housing Projects in February 1942. My father believed that public housing should be a temporary solution with full access to those who needed it but that it should not be a goal or a final solution. He further believed that the ensuing conflict ungodly and inappropriate.

On February 28, a band of White pickets approached the Black families with clubs and bats. The police were called, and in a short time, a truckload of Blacks, also armed with clubs, arrived on the scene. The resulting battle turned into a free-for-all as police joined the Whites in battling the Blacks. It was some time before the disturbance could be quelled.

The second conflict began on June 24, 1943, originating with rumors of White and Black people killing or injuring each other. This escalated to a destructive riot in which 34 persons were killed, more than 461 injured and over a million man hours lost, according to the historical record. The rioting pricked a conscious level of concern and pride and focused on Blacks working together as a group. This "collective thinking" happened regardless of the thoughts of the working poor, the striving middle class or those African-Americans who thought they were beyond this dilemma. The riots brought home the collective circumstance of African-Americans across lines of class or socio-economic status. The riots crystallized this need for working together, and as a result, Detroit was a city with more businesses, hospitals, stores and shops for Black people than any other urban area. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

From the Detroit Riot to the Malcolm Summit
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.