The sudden impact of the picture of two men hanging from a tree while people pointed, laughed, looked stunned or turned their back was one which had been in my social studies text book in grade twelve. There was no true explanation other than the words In the American South, lynchings were commonplace until the first half of the 20th century. Where was this place? Who were these people? How could this be happening in the 20th century? Then I discovered this book. It was on the night of August 7, 1930 in Marion, Indiana, that this stunningly cruel event occurred. But what has become more stunning is that for the people of Marion, the emotions brought forward by the lynching has dogged their town ever since. And what is more horrific for me than the initial view of the infamous photo is the fact that we are all implicated in such acts because we have turned our backs on the hatred, ignorance, and fear that is at the bottom of it all. The author said it best: We were blind. We let it happen.
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