hate and compassion

The Emmett Till lynching was a key point in the US civil rights movement. The lynching was a reaction to what was professed to be assault of an older white woman by a black boy. This case was an exemplar but not the only one. Emmett’s accuser was silent after the crime, but has just come forth and admitted to a Duke historian that Emmett had not harassed her.

Admissions like this are curious. It is obviously a good thing to have clarity, but lynchings are unjustifiable. This very human story is interesting and speaks a lot to forgiveness:

For his part, Mr. Parker, a pastor, said he harbors no ill will toward Ms. Donham, and hopes that her admission brings her peace.

“I can’t hate,” he said. “Hate destroys the hater, too. That’s a heavy burden to carry.”


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