One of the most horrific acts of violence that our ancestors had to endure was the brutal practice of lynching. The reality that life could end in such a horrific way was very real for more people than we’d like to believe, with one report coming from the Equal Justice Initiative that lists more than 4,000 Black men, women and children that were lynched throughout the country from 1877 to 1950. The real hot spot for hate ended up being Mississippi though, which tallied up 581 lynchings and set the record for any state in America.
As times have certainly changed since then and Black people have way more than their freedom now, unfortunately we can’t say lynchings don’t still happen. To put that into more perspective, Mississippi reportedly is suspected of eight probable cases in just the past 20 years.
In a report by The Washington Post, it’s pretty much believed that it never really stopped down in Mississippi. A private investigation by lawyer and civil right activist Jill Collen Jefferson revealed that at least eight Black people have been lynched in the state since 2000. To make matters worse, each case of lynching she discovered saw the death ruled by the police as suicides, against what the family and loved ones of those deceased believed.
Here’s a case from just three years ago, via The Root:
“The most recent case of 35-year-old Deondrey Montreal Hopkins ended with local police saying that his death was not a homicide. Phillip Carroll, 22, was found hanging from a tree, in Jackson, Miss., May 28, 2018. His death was ruled a suicide. Otis Byrd, 55, was found hanging from a tree in Port Gibson, Miss., on March 19, 2015. His death was ruled a suicide. The FBI and the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division conducted an investigation and found no foul play.”
While that might be a harsh reality to take in, it’s even harder knowing that something like that could very well be happening right now. As Jefferson put it, “The last recorded lynching in the United States was in 1981. But the thing is, lynchings never stopped in the United States. Lynchings in Mississippi never stopped. The evil bastards just stopped taking photographs and passing them around like baseball cards.”
Give us your thoughts on the subject by sounding off with all opinions.
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