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Bill Would Make Wilmington Riots Part of Curriculum

Posted March 14, 2007

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— A state lawmaker wants to ensure North Carolina students learn about the Wilmington race riots of 1898, one of the most troubling chapters in state history.

Rep. Thomas Wright, D-New Hanover, is a former chairman of the Wilmington Race Riote Commission, and he filed nine bills in the last two days to codify the commission's recommendations.

In November 1898, armed whites marched through black sections of Wilmington, driving people out and killing some who dared to challenge them. Whites also deposed elected black officials and took control of the city.

One of Wright's bills, House Bill 633, would make the riots part of the state history curriculum required in North Carolina public schools. Other proposals would provide funding for exhibits and monuments in Wilmington and set limits on civil damages for the descendants of those affected by the riots.

House Bill 751 calls for the General Assembly to "acknowledge that the riot was a conspiracy of the white elite, using intimidation and force, to replace a duly elected local government."

Meanwhile, Wright resigned Monday from his committee chairmanship responsibilities while the State Board of Elections investigates his campaign financing.


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  • nsanity Mar 20, 2007

    What kills me is that people get so riled up with the thought of reparations. No, today's white people did not cause the problems of the past but the fact is that they still benefit from the system more than blacks, Native Americans, Hispanics, etc. We all know that no one is going to relinquish their power for the sake of being fair but you need to acknowledge that had freed slaves received their "40 acres and a mule", the claim that reparations are not needed would be a little more valid. As for the riots, they do need to be included in the curriculum of NC history because they are an important lesson. And contrary to popular opinion, history is a very important discipline.

  • mvnull Mar 18, 2007

    "What about the race riots of 1955 in lumberton NC...OH WE FORGOT.... JUST INDIANS.....SORRY"

    Sorry, you'll have to wait another 50 years -- after everyone involved is dead and an apology is essentially meaningless.

  • grumpyhermit Mar 16, 2007

    Humankind is both viciously xenophobic and capable of amazing acts of kindness. Tribal mentality hinders progress towards a global civilization based on decency and dignity. The past is ugly. The present is not much better. Future, anyone?

  • kota2947 Mar 15, 2007

    What about the race riots of 1955 in lumberton NC...OH WE FORGOT.... JUST INDIANS.....SORRY

  • kota2947 Mar 15, 2007


  • kota2947 Mar 15, 2007

    IGNORANCE???Give back?ok lets pay the millions of indians killed First,THEN give back their land,OR just back rent.then(if there is anything left )WE get payed for all the current damage done to our towns, cities,and private properties.Then, lets pay for all the sins of our forefathers.but well be broke, AND WE CAN ALL GO ON WELFARE...THEN WE WILL ALL BE THE SAME>>>WELIFARE INDIANS

  • Harrison Bergeron Mar 15, 2007

    They continue to dig up the dead, decaying corpses of the past to parade them around in the name of White Guilt. Unfortunately, its not working any more. People are wising-up and getting tired of being asked to apologize for the sins of the past; all while staring at the problems of the present.

    Problems such as rampant crime, burgeoning populations of people who can't support themselves, and the continuing decline of our public school systems all have the same root cause.

    No amount of reparations are going to change that...

  • innocent bystander Mar 15, 2007

    Keep the legislature--and I mean BOTH democrats and republicans--from micromanaging our public schools, period. They have no business telling teachers what should or shouldn't be included in a history or biology curriculum, just as they have no business mandating that the pledge be recited every day, or that every classroom display the flag.

  • ohmyteacher Mar 15, 2007

    How is adding this to the curriculum going to make our students better prepared for the global workplace? It seems that its only reason would be to further divisions between the races.

  • El Doggo Mar 15, 2007

    Reparations are NEXT! We have given them everything else (they certainly haven't earned it)!!! All that is left is reparations!!!!