June 3, 2017
The National Museum of African American History and Culture.
Imagine being a Black schoolboy visiting the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington DC for the first time. Imagine your excitement over the chance to finally celebrate your ancestors’ rich cultural achievements!
What will you see first? The George Washington Carver workshop, in which you can make your own peanut butter? The Egyptian Experience, where you can find out what it was like to be a Black Pharaoh ruling over White and Arab slaves?
How about the exhibition dedicated to Amelia Bassano, the Black author who published her works under the pseudonym “William Shakespeare”?
The choice is limitless!
As you excitedly wander around the museum, however, you notice something hanging in the distance that looks out of place. You move closer, discerning its outline against the bright white walls.
Suddenly, you freeze in shock.
It’s a noose.
And it’s not part of the exhibition.
On Wednesday, as yellow buses disgorged flocks of school groups and multigenerational visitors pushed wheelchairs and strollers into the Smithsonian’s compelling National Museum of African American History and Culture, something entered the building with them:
Sometime in the afternoon, in the gallery on segregation, someone placed the vile instrument of our country’s history of lynching — a noose — inside the museum. It was the second time this week one was found on Smithsonian grounds. A noose was found hanging from a tree near the Hirshhorn Museum four days earlier.
But a noose inside the African American Museum was a disturbing reminder that our history of racial oppression and violence is far from over.
A photo of the noose found in the museum. Note that the vandal made it heart-shaped, presumably to make it look “cute” and “appealing.”
This story doesn’t surprise me, to be honest. When I first read about the plans for an African American Museum in DC, I knew that White people would abuse it for their own warped amusement.
In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if most White people – from street sweepers to Presidents – walked around the museum with a noose in their pockets just for the racial thrill.
Shortly after their visit to the African American Museum, Trump told Carson what had been inside his coat the whole time.
“The noose has long represented a deplorable act of cowardice and depravity — a symbol of extreme violence for African Americans,” Lonnie Bunch, the founding director of the museum, said in a statement. “Today’s incident is a painful reminder of the challenges that African Americans continue to face.
“This was a horrible act,” he said, “but a stark reminder of why our work is so important.”
The noose is indeed a symbol of cowardice.
Here’s the problem: a lot of White Americans assume that their ancestors lynched Blacks because the Blacks committed serious crimes that merited the death penalty.
What if I told you, though, that most of these “crimes” were often anything but?
Take a look at the photos below.
A murderer and a rapist? Not quite. The Black to the left was lynched because his nose was half an inch wider than social norms allowed, while the Black to the right was lynched because a White child dreamed that he stole her teddy bear.
These Black slaves met their fate when the brutal plantation owner accidentally broke his favorite wind chime. Rather than purchase a new one, which would have cost him two dollars, the plantation owner used his slaves as wind chimes instead.
This photo shows the final resting place of a Black cotton picker who decided to take up weightlifting in his spare time. When his muscles became bigger than those of his slave master, however, the slave master became furious, and, in a final act of domination, forced the Black to flex while being hung.
Clearly, the history of lynching in America is far different from what the pro-White, Jewish-authored textbooks have told us.
Still think that noose pranks are funny, White people?