Monday, June 1, 2009

Memory Monday- 1968




I was talking to a friend Saturday and the year 1968 came up in regards to the Black Panther Party as a pivotal year. Then later on that evening, a friend of my sister and I reminisced about our high school days at Fremont High in Oakland. She graduated in 1977 and I graduated in 1968, having spent my senior year at Skyline High.

1968 was a monumental year for a lot of reasons other than my graduation year. It was outstanding for the fact that the world was changing in the Bay Area and in the world. 1968 was also the year we lost Martin Luther King, the esteemed civil rights leader. That was in April and then in June, Robert Kennedy, hoping to be the Democratic nominee for President was assassinated moments after winning the California primary. I was seventeen and going through a rebellious stage. When we went to Arkansas that summer of 1968, we were welcomed with open arms in one of the finest hotels in Dallas, unlike our 1963 trip when Jim Crow was still in effect. On the trip when we spent the night in Salt Lake City, Utah, I refused to visit the Mormon Temple because of their then stance on the salvation of black people.

When I think about those years, I get melancholy and nostalgic but I can look at the many changes and landmarks that have been made. And I can be thankful, I am still here to look back and reflect.

3 comments:

Beverly said...

Yes, 1968 was a pivotal year. I was a freshman in college and absorbing all of the different prespectives of the events. I so remember the camaraderie among the African-Americans who attended college in the Boston area.
You could not be aware of all of the changes that were happening and that you could help contribute to the changes.

Angelia... said...

Wow, 1968, I was eleven that year...on the cusp of being a teenager and so many changes in the world...I can still see my mom with her Afro, looking like Angela Davis...it was also my last year in an all Black school...

angelia

Ladysilver said...

Dera,

Thanks for this glimpse into that time. I was an AA studies major at Rutgers, but always appreciate first hand feelings on this time. My mother, being from SC, never liked to talk to me about her experience during that time.