Transcript for Woman whose father was lynched 73 years ago reflects on the current moment
Now we turn to Josephine bowling Mccall, a woman who knows all too well the crime of lynching. She's interviewed victims for her book. Here's our conversation from earlier today. You've been pushing for the Emmett till anti-lynching legislation. What is it, and why is it so crucial for this to be in place for our country? National issues require national action, an anti-lynching bill has been on the table ever since 1898 with Ida B. Wells. I was 5 years old when my father was lynched, and I am now 77 years old. And we still don't have any anti-lynching legislation. As long as there are no consequences for such terrible crimes, then we'll not have any ceasing to those actions. Your father, as you mentioned, Mr. Elmore bowling was shot seven times by a white man in Alabama. We are still seeing modern-day lynchings across the country. When you see these incidents in 2020, what goes through your mind? I think of myself as a 5-year-old who expects her father to come home, who never came home because he had been I also think of the people now, the suffering they are going through, because they have no protection. We don't have any equal protection under the law. And so the people now are suffering as I suffered, and I think it's time for a change. Today, as you know is juneteenth, a celebration of the end of slavery. Why is it even more important for the people of the country to acknowledge the date do you think? Juneteenth is important because we need people to begin to recognize us for who we are, respect us as human beings, and that is what we are being denied. ? Are you hopeful or cautious about the activism and protests you've seen in the past few weeks? Yes, I'm hopeful because we see intergenerational protests. There are a lot of injustices that are prevailing today. And we need health care. We need economic advantages that have been denied to us. In fact, my father was an entrepreneur, and that was the reason he was killed. It was deemed that he was too prosperous as a Negro. On this day in this moment, what do you think your dad might say? As you mentioned, he was an entrepreneur, a successful businessman, a farmer. What might he say in this moment? He was very, very religious, and he always sought to help people. And I believe that he would still be trying to explain the nature of having to live together peacefully by working together to engage in projects together and that would be the way that he would try to help everyone obtain success. His legacy continues in his daughter and in your family. Josephine bowling Mccall, thanks so much for your time. Continue grace. Thank you for having me.
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