Lynching: Should whites apologize?


McLennan County TX Commissioner Lester Gibson thought we should back in 2006. In fact he was so adamant about a resolution being drawn up which he wanted displayed next to a historical mural located in the city. This resolution, according to Gibson, should have included verbiage such as, “apologize for the failure of past leadership to uphold and defend lynching victims’ most basic rights to life, liberty, and due process under the laws of our cherished democracy…. and express the deepest sympathies and most solemn regrets to the descendants of victims of lynchings, whose ancestors were deprived of life, human dignity, and the constitutional protections accorded to all citizens of the United States.”

The resolution, that was voted on and approved, condemned “all past unlawful acts and lynchings and the ‘mob mentality’ that fostered these despicable acts of violence,” but did not include an apology.

Gibson continued to bring the subject up every week even though displaying the resolution next to the historical mural was voted down. At least one other commissioner walked out of the meetings when Gibson revisited the issue. [source]

So what is the back story on all of this?

On May 15, 1916 Jesse Washington, a 17-year-old black resident was “dragged from the county courthouse, beaten, stoned, castrated, hanged and burned in front of City Hall.” Yes, he was lynched, but was he the victim? Uh, no! He was a perpetrator -a confessed murderer and rapist.

This young black man was lynched 8 days after being convicted and sentenced to death for the “bludgeoning death of Lucy Fryer, 53, the wife of a white farmer in Robinson.” He confessed to the crime and was subsequently convicted. A mob of angry citizens removed him from the custody of officers as he left the courtroom, took him to an alley behind the building, and delivered what they felt was justice for crimes he admitted to committing. The incident is referred to as the Waco Horror.[source]

And would you guess, someone attempted to “blame whitey” with regards to this issue. “A. T. Smith, an African American journalist, editor of the Paul Quinn Weekly, was arrested and convicted of criminal libel after he printed allegations that Lucy Fryer’s husband had committed the murder.” [source]

Now, we are all humans, not animals. We are civilized, aren’t we? Burning someone alive is not civilized. But then raping and bludgeoning to death another human is not civilized either, is it?

No, we should not apologize. Where is the apology to the murder victim and her family? Are we to request resolutions which include apologies for the crimes blacks commit against whites? Why did the black community not condemn this man’s actions? Why do they still to this day not condemn his crimes, and like crimes being committed every day all over the world by their own brothers and sisters, mothers and fathers, and so on?

I will tell you why. Blacks will not apologize for their crimes and the crimes committed by their brethren because they feel they are entitled to such bad behavior because “the man” has “kept them down” for all these years. If you let a black person, or white apologist tell the story, they will tell one of victimization of blacks, poor and unequal opportunities, poor education, and just plain old being poor!

In closing I will leave you with comments made by the great granddaughter of slain Lucy Fryer:

“Our family isn’t asking the community for an apology for what Jesse Washington did to our great grandmother, nor do we think the community owes anyone an apology for what happened to Mr. Washington… A written resolution is not going to change the past.”

From the looks of it, it isn’t going to change the future either.