Tulsa Race Massacre survivors fight for reparations 100 years later
Survivors and their descendants are still fighting for restitution 100 years after the Tulsa Race Massacre.
Today (May 31) and tomorrow (June 1) mark the 100-year anniversary of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre, a violent attack by white rioters on Black residents and businesses in Oklahoma’s prosperous Greenwood District, also known as Black Wall Street.
The deadly rampage, which left hundreds of Black Americans killed, businesses and homes destroyed and has been described as “the single worst incident of racial violence in American history,” will be commemorated with events and a visit from President Joe Biden on Tuesday.
As the observation of the massacre approached earlier this month, advocates and descendants of survivors have ramped up their legal efforts to finally get restitution for the atrocities that Black families and business owners endured over the two-day attack. One of those legal efforts is a lawsuit that aims to find the full amount of damage perpetrated by white rioters and address the lasting effects of inequality in the city today.
“It’s, in my view, probably the worst act of domestic terrorism that we’ve ever seen,” McKenzie Haynes, one of the lawyers involved in the suit, told CBC Radio this week. “Black people in America have been hunted and treated like non-humans for centuries and what happened in Tulsa in 1921 was just a testament of that.”
The suit doesn’t name a monetary value that Tulsa Race Massacre survivors and their descendants are owed, but instead introduces several measures that are intended to decrease the economic inequality felt in the area as a direct result of the riot.
“Their property was taken, businesses were destroyed, people were murdered, families were separated and [north] Tulsa became a ghetto,” Haynes said. “The inequalities are tremendous.”
Past legal efforts to get reparations for survivors and their descendants have failed due to the statute of limitations. However, this new suit mirrors arguments used in the 2019 ruling that held Johnson & Johnson accountable for Oklahoma’s opioid drug crisis. At the time, the pharmaceutical company was ordered to pay $527 million in restitution after a judge found their deceptive marketing caused an “ongoing public nuisance.” Under the state’s “public nuisance statute,” Haynes said, the statute of limitations can be overlooked.
“We wanted to parallel the race massacre and the harm that was caused as a ‘public nuisance,’ basically saying that the massacre itself caused a public nuisance that is continuing to this day,” she explained.
The future of the lawsuit will be determined tomorrow, when plaintiffs submit their response to a motion to dismiss the suit. Watch the Tulsa Race Massacre Centennial Commemoration and candlelit vigil, which were broadcast earlier this morning, below.
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE
The acting duo exchanges comedic jabs en route to revealing Tyler Clark’s hidden talent.
Check out six insightful gems that Angela Yee dropped on “The Blackprint with Detavio Samuels.”
Tiffany Haddish on therapy, wild fan interactions & the upcoming 'Haunted Mansion' movie | 'The Jason Lee Show'
On this all-new episode of “The Jason Lee Show,” the one and only Tiffany Haddish sits for a must-watch conversation about wild interactions with fans, her new movie ‘Haunted Mansion,’ bringing her therapist on dates, and being present. Watch the hilarious interview here.
On this all-new episode of “On In 5,” multitalented Nigerian artist Pheelz opens up about waiting for his opportunity to fully express himself through music, his inspirations and emotions, and the musical icons he grew up admiring. Watch!
On this episode of “Assets Over Liabilities,” Jordyn Woods welcomes hosts Rashad Bilal and Troy Millings to her headquarters to discuss expanding Woods by Jordyn, prioritizing authenticity throughout her brand promotions, not talking about money with friends, being patient, and saying, “No.” Watch here!
For this all-new episode of “On In 5,” singer-songwriter BNXN discusses his journey from IT to music, finding his voice and originality, linking up with Wizkid for their hits “Mood” and “Many Ways,” and what fans can expect from him this year — including a new album. Watch the full episode here!
Kareem Cook talks growing up in The Bronx, studying at Duke & networking | 'The Blackprint with Detavio Samuels'
On this all-new episode of “The Blackprint with Detavio Samuels,” the host and REVOLT CEO sits down with Kareem Cook. Throughout the introspective episode, Cook talks growing up in The Bronx, studying at Duke and being nervous to be in the South at the time, network vs. education, taking advantage of your opportunities, and connecting with Debbie Allen. Watch!
Angela Yee talks "The Breakfast Club," growing up in Brooklyn & interning for Wu-Tang Clan | ‘The Blackprint with Detavio Samuels’
On this all-new episode of “The Blackprint,” host and REVOLT CEO Detavio Samuels welcomes Angela Yee to discuss growing up in Brooklyn, interning for Wu-Tang Clan, “The Breakfast Club,” and curating her own show. Presented by LIFEWTR.
“I love music and media and thoroughly enjoy observing panels,” one person said. “Also…I love to see our artists performing, so I’ll definitely be in attendance to see Babyface Ray perform!”
Yo-Yo is happy hip hop's trailblazers are being recognized & loves how fearless today's female lyricists are
Ahead of hip hop’s 50th birthday, Yo-Yo opened up about her outstanding career and the women who are holding down the fort today. “I think this generation is more fearless, they take less s**t, they say what they want, and they get it,” Yo-Yo stated in this exclusive interview. Read up!
Happy 50th anniversary, hip hop. You’re on a tier where no tears should ever fall. My hope is that the millions of us forever enriched by your glory of the past 50 years continue to endure and inspire in your name over the next 50.
“This marks an important historic moment,” Wyclef Jean exclusively told REVOLT. “The Caribbean Music Awards created a bridge to unify all Caribbean artists and show the world that [we] are strong in numbers, as well as leaders of the culture.”
LA native and designer Aleali May teams up with Clarks Originals for a new collaboration.
Ahead of hip hop’s 50th birthday, Doechii sat with REVOLT for an exclusive interview and talked about her upcoming tour with Doja Cat, love for Beyoncé and Nicki Minaj, some of her favorite rap albums and much more. Read up!
Ahead of hip hop’s 50th birthday, REVOLT sat down with NBA star Jaylen Brown to discuss his career, the South’s impact on rap, the importance of Black media outlets and so much more. Read up!
This groundbreaking chapter in Willow Smith’s journey signifies innovation at the intersection of Web3 and the music industry. Read up!
“I built my own lane… I’m just educating myself on a daily basis,” he told REVOLT in this exclusive interview for Black Business Month. Read up!
“Ownership holds a lot of weight. It’s about reaping the rewards of your hard work, having a say in how things roll,” Ice Cube tells REVOLT in this “Web3” exclusive about giving fans a piece of the BIG3 pie.
“I still feel like I haven’t scratched the surface of my capabilities… I just want to be the best version of myself,” she acknowledged in this exclusive interview for REVOLT. Read up!