Positive: A Lesson from History

13% Whites / 13% Blacks

  • [The legacy of Central High] keeps before us the history of segregation and helps … us to know how important it is to continue to work to improve race relations – Black female, 47 years old
  • Continuing to teach about it … helps [people] realize how bad it was, and that everyone is created equal and we will never make the same mistake again. – White female, 26 years old
  • It opens people’s eyes to the struggle we went through. – Black female, 23 years old

A number of people commented that they felt the events of Central High act as a warning from history.  The shocking events of 1957 have left their mark and can now serve as a reminder to society to never permit such indefensible breaches of justice and human rights again.

Some of the comments in this category suggested people view the Central High crisis not so much as a reproach from the past but more as an event that warrants celebration, as its resolution marked an historic victory for civil rights.  Similar numbers of blacks and whites offered comments in this vein, indicating that keeping the past alive and learning from it was of importance to both races.