133 people visited the blog yesterday! A recent high, topped by 296 the day I launched six months ago. I’m psyched! Thanks to all who came,  read, hopped around the site and commented.

L-R: Dennis Roberts, Charles Jones, me and Peter de Lissovoy at BBQ hosted by Chevene King, Jr. in Albany, GA. June 2011

It’s 5:30 am Saturday and I spent a restless night thinking about Emmett and Trayvon and their families, finally pushed from the bed by these words and the picture above taken last June in Albany when I met these three heroes of the Southwest Georgia SNCC Civil Rights Movement at the 50th Anniversary.Also want to share the words of Charles Jones (to my right above), responding to an email I sent remembering Emmett last August on the anniversary of his tragic death:

CJ: “As I read your e-mail  I was back at the moments that I became aware at this time of the details of Emmett Till murder his puffed up face and swollen body from the horrific beating that he got from those persons who believed they had a right and duty to do what they did to that child, with limited IQ who had no idea why he was being so brutalized.

Sister Jones please know that every brother, black man in SNCC and every black man in this country felt the agony and pain that you felt when you wrote this e-mail. Each of us were always intimately aware that our participation in the struggle at any time we to could be beaten and brutalized as we challenge the horrible system of racial humiliation and segregation.

It is late and I too am tired after a very long and productive day but I could not lay my body down and go to sleep without sharing with you a collective pain.”

And…lucky for us Peter de Lissovoy sent an email early this morning which I’ll also share below. So exciting how I’m hearing from veterans I met last June, with their deep words dripping golden wisdom, past and present. Hey Dennis! Love to hear from you!

PdL:“I agree with Anita the comparison of the two incidents is inevitable, and welcome it— peeling back history and reminds us of things. With my roots in Chicago, I have long been aware of the devastation that the Till murder wreaked in Chicago and over the nation, which because of his mother’s attitude and bravery in how she dealt with it had a profound galvanizing effect on everybody starting with Rosa Parks. I used to hear about it all from Chicago friends, who went to the open-coffin funeral.

In yesterday’s post Anita  quotes  a letter  I wrote her where I make a distinction, between the Klan mentality of the ancient regime and the “new racism” carried like a virus by halfwits and busybodies like Zimmerman. We Albany GA-ites (of whom Anita is one as you know) and other SNNCers remember the former very well with a shudder, and are probably newly appalled by the latter and pretty amazed at the whole “stand your ground” phenomenon, if others are like me. I think the link Anita directly makes between the incidents has profound historical merit beyond where I might be able to see it. The Trayvon tragedy has brought out into the open the evidence of a new condition of things that along with various other contemporary phenomena, nobody has fully absorbed, explained, or understood yet. Hey everybody, subscribe to Anita’s blog for a little ongoing flavor from Albany GA and the beyond where Anita’s mind roams!”

Now…more pictures from the BBQ in Albany last June at the home of Chevene King, Jr. ~

L-R: Our host, Chevene King, Jr, with me and Charles Jones.