Printer Friendly

First in truth.

North Carolinians take pride in their "First in Flight" license plates. Now they can claim another first--the first Truth and Reconciliation Commission in the United States.

Twenty-five years after Ku Klux Klan and American Nazi Party members killed five labor activists in a march for workers' rights, the Greensboro community is calling for truth from the perpetrators and the victims. Despite local news crews filming the murders, all-white juries acquitted the men who pulled the triggers and plunged Greensboro into years of traumatized silence.

In June, the six commissioners were officially seated. Five are local community leaders and the sixth is executive director of the Fellowship of Reconciliation. The commissioners were trained by the International Center for Transitional Justice, which draws its methods from the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Unlike its South African counterpart, the Greensboro commission was not initiated by the government, but by the community.

"Fundamental to faith is the truth--a truth that liberates us from the bondage of falsehood," Rev. Nelson Johnson, a veteran civil rights activist who was an organizer at the 1979 rally, told Sojourners. "But truth, with all its bitterness and dark sides, needs to have with it healing and reconciliation. It is the reconciliation that transforms the truth.

We often believe we can be reconciled without knowing what we really need to be reconciled about. The truth process in Greensboro will open up a way for our community to heal and model a way for other communities, who can adapt it to their particular situation."
COPYRIGHT 2004 Sojourners
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2004, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Title Annotation:GREENSBORO; Truth and Reconciliation Commission
Publication:Sojourners
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Sep 1, 2004
Words:254
Previous Article:Bearing another's burden.
Next Article:Fighting the power.
Topics:


Related Articles
The making of Southern justice.
Forgiveness and reconciliation as applied to national and international conflicts.
Truth-telling time.
Dirty laundry gets airing.
Inside story.
From fear to truth: America's first truth and reconciliation commission tries to bring healing to a divided community.
Forgiveness and reconciliation as applied to national and international conflicts.
Citizens remember.
Racial reconciliation: across the South, communities are creating truth and reconciliation commissions to address a past of deadly violence.

Terms of use | Privacy policy | Copyright © 2019 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters