I recently sat with a Durham Millennial, who aspires to politics, discussing city-wide, radical steps that could be taken to signal a strong break with the status quo. One of the possibilities raised was a Durham city resolution supporting reparations to descendants of slavery.
It would be a bold move, no doubt. America has yet to truly reconcile with slavery and our history of racism. As a nation to regain a sense of collectivity, we have to examine and air the worst of our deeds, and the full extent of them.
This is the rationale through which Truth and Reconciliation Commission Hearings attempted to heal South Africa and the National Unity and Reconciliation Commission attempted to reconstitute Rwanda after tribal genocide.
Bringing it back to America, this weekend at Mercury Studio you have a two day opportunity to become alert to and help fight the cultural genocide of the Gullah-Geechee people and their land.
story by: Aaron Mandel
The Gullah (also called the Geechee) are African tribal descendants of slaves with a three century long cultural history on the North American continent and a far longer tradition that stretches across the ocean. They finally earned a modicum of Federal protection when in 2006 the United States Congress created the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor which extends from Wilmington, North Carolina to Jacksonville, Florida. Efforts to preserve the unique Gullah language have been under way since the mid-20th century.
It is not hard to imagine resource sucking, golf course building developers pushing for eminent domain based confiscation of premium coastal lands.
The events at Mercury Studio Friday and Saturday evening are to call attention to the unprecedented corporate attacks on these historic lands. There is a Pop-Up shop Friday night. Saturday at 5pm there will be a screening of the film “Daughters Of The Dust” which tells the story of three generations of Gullah in the early 20th Century.
Later Saturday night, at 10pm, there will be a Dance Party hosted by Alex and Jazsalyn. There is a $5 cover charge with all proceeds donated to the Gullah Geechee Corridor.
Learn more about Gullah-Geechee culture here.