M-A hosts screening of Tulsa race riot documentary this week | News | Almanac Online |

News

M-A hosts screening of Tulsa race riot documentary this week

M-A grad produced film about one of the 'worst incidents of racial violence in U.S. history'

A film screening at Menlo-Atherton High School on Thursday, Feb. 6, offers the opportunity to learn about a little-known chapter of U.S. history.

Reggie Turner, an M-A and Stanford University graduate, will speak about his 2008 film, "Before They Die!" — about the 1921 Tulsa race riot, according to an Eventbrite invitation for the event.

During the riot, white residents attacked black residents and businesses in the predominantly black Greenwood neighborhood of Tulsa, Oklahoma, leaving hundreds dead and thousands homeless, according to a History.com article.

In 2018, an Oklahoma commission tasked with studying the incident renamed it the Tulsa race massacre.

The film chronicles the stories of the riot survivors and their quest for justice.

Turner contacted M-A English teacher Sherinda Bryant about coming "home to M-A" to screen the film and talk about his experiences at M-A as a teen, Bryant said.

The former student made the film after meeting survivors of the massacre — who longed for the incident to be part of the historical record — during a 2003 trip to Tulsa, according to an article in TulsaPeople Magazine.

The massacre remains one of the "worst incidents of racial violence in U.S. history" and is one of the least known, since news reports were quashed, the History.com article states.

Turner will also discuss growing up in East Palo Alto during the 1950s and 1960s, which he found to be similar to the Greenwood neighborhood — both were all-black communities because of segregation, according to TulsaPeople.

Turner found that he and the Tulsa survivors also experienced "extreme cases of racism," the TulsaPeople article states. During Turner's time at M-A, there were race riots and bomb threats, and black students were frustrated that no bus would take them to school, Turner told TulsaPeople.

There will be a "meet and greet" with Turner at 6 p.m. in the school's performing arts center, followed by a screening of the 92-minute film at 7 p.m.

Turner will also meet with students that day during the school's flex time and lunch breaks in the M-A library.

The M-A Black Student Union and Turner are hosting the event.

Tickets are free for students, $10 for general admission, and $20 for a ticket that includes admission and a DVD of the film. Proceeds from the event will benefit the families of Tulsa race riot survivors.

For tickets, go here.

For more on the film, go here.

---

Sign up for Almanac Express to get news updates. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Or show your support for local journalism by subscribing.

What is community worth to you?
Support local journalism.

Comments

There are no comments yet. Please share yours below.

Post a comment

Posting an item on Town Square is simple and requires no registration. Just complete this form and hit "submit" and your topic will appear online. Please be respectful and truthful in your postings so Town Square will continue to be a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

We prefer that you use your real name, but you may use any "member" name you wish.

Name: *

Select your neighborhood or school community: * Not sure?

Choose a category: *

Since this is the first comment on this story a new topic will also be started in Town Square! Please choose a category that best describes this story.

Comment: *

Verification code: *
Enter the verification code exactly as shown, using capital and lowercase letters, in the multi-colored box.

*Required Fields


All your news. All in one place. Every day.

Los Altos's State of Mind opening NYC-inspired pizza shop in Palo Alto
By Elena Kadvany | 12 comments | 7,748 views

Flying: How much is enough? It's personal.
By Sherry Listgarten | 12 comments | 2,492 views

Wait, wait – we’re working on it
By Diana Diamond | 17 comments | 1,995 views

My Pet Peeves
By John Raftrey and Lori McCormick | 7 comments | 1,564 views

Goodbye toy stores
By Cheryl Bac | 3 comments | 777 views

 

Short story writers wanted!

The 34th Annual Palo Alto Weekly Short Story Contest is now accepting entries for Adult, Young Adult and Teen categories. Send us your short story (2,500 words or less) and entry form by March 27, 2020. First, Second and Third Place prizes awarded in each category.

View Details