15
Jul
11

ruby

President Barack Obama, Ruby Bridges, and representatives of the Norman Rockwell Museum view Rockwell’s “The Problem We All Live With,” hanging in a West Wing hallway near the Oval Office, July 15, 2011. Bridges is the girl portrayed in the painting. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

AOL (2010): When Ruby Bridges arrived for her first day at William Frantz Elementary School in New Orleans 50 years ago, she thought it was Mardi Gras. People lined the streets, shouting and throwing things – just like a Carnival parade. But these people weren’t celebrating.

At 6 years old, Bridges had been unwittingly thrust onto the grand stage of American history. Her parents had volunteered her to be the first black child to attend an all-white school in the South. Local law enforcement refused to protect her from the unruly mobs that surrounded her school, so every day she was escorted by four federal marshals – the scene immortalized by Norman Rockwell’s painting “The Problem We All Live With.”

That first day, all the parents had rushed into the building and taken their kids out — effectively boycotting the school. The school didn’t quite know what to do; Ruby was told to just sit in the principal’s office until it was time to go home.

“I remember thinking, ‘This school is easy,'” Bridges told AOL News.

Since then, Bridges grew up, raised four sons and worked as a travel agent before returning to a career as an educational activist that she had started at such a young age. But while her educational career eventually subsided into a normal New Orleans childhood – albeit one charged by forced integration – those exceptional first days in school had shaped her for life.

Full article here


106 Responses to “ruby”


  1. 1 tally
    July 15, 2011 at 5:33 pm

    What an amazing article! Thanks Chips for the link.

    I highly recommend everyone go read it.

  2. 2 PoliticalJunkessa
    July 15, 2011 at 5:35 pm

    Phenomenal.

  3. 3 Debz
    July 15, 2011 at 5:37 pm

    The article is amazing. Thanks Chips for posting this.

  4. 4 Sue
    July 15, 2011 at 5:38 pm

    Wow. Thank you for posting this, so touching!

  5. 5 GGail
    July 15, 2011 at 5:38 pm

    I wonder what McConnell will think when he views the painting. Thanks Chipsticks for posting this reminder of history.

  6. July 15, 2011 at 5:41 pm

    How about Bachmann. What would she say?

  7. 8 Debz
    July 15, 2011 at 5:43 pm

    I just read the caption under the photo I didn’t realize that was Ruby standing with PBO.

    • 9 Doris
      July 15, 2011 at 5:47 pm

      Just beautiful. Thanks Chips.

    • 10 Anonymous
      July 15, 2011 at 7:02 pm

      This Is sooooooo meaningful, and real, and historical. She was a pretty Girl, and Is a pretty Lady too, wowwwwwwww, that painting, says and speaks volumes. Thank you Chips, you are a true *GEM* :D

    • July 15, 2011 at 7:10 pm

      Thank you Chips, for sharing this photo with us, You are a true *GEM*. Ruby was a cute little girl, and Is a pretty Lady too :-D As I looked at that photo of Ruby, as a little Girl, It took me back when I was about six years old, Mama use to fix my hair like that too. I Immediately moved Into Ruby’s shoes, the way she was dressed. I was raised In South Carolina, but I went to segregated Schools. But Yes, I remember that era, especially when I saw Ruby as a little Girl. Jogged my memory for sure :-) :-)

  8. July 15, 2011 at 5:49 pm

    In 1963 I was arrested and taken to the rat infested Pine St police station for trying to buy a ticket to attend the all white Northwood movie. I was a 19 years old college student. I can only imagine what that child was going thru. I was more afraid of what my father was going to do than anyone else but he told me he was proud of me. I will never forget the hate of the people who watch me get arrested.

    • July 15, 2011 at 5:52 pm

      Thats a hard thing to share Sonjia- thank you for doing so. We’ve come a long way and yet we still have so far to go. It is tough for my own 11 year old to ‘get’ this stuff.. he so takes it all for granted.

      • 14 utaustinliberal
        July 15, 2011 at 6:08 pm

        The Rockwell painting and the story of Ruby that was the inspiration behind it is awe inspiring.

        Sonjia, thank you so much for sharing such a personal and heartbreaking story. As an African-American female college student, who is able to have these freedoms thanks to the warriors who came before me in so many movements, I duff my hat to you and other warriors big and small and say a huge THANK YOU.

      • 15 prettyfoot58
        July 15, 2011 at 6:56 pm

        oftentimes the debate of federal vs states rights causes me to think of these times….it was the Federal Gov that played such a pivotal role during this time…Federal Marshalls protected this lil girl because the state would not…

    • 16 MTmarilyn
      July 15, 2011 at 5:59 pm

      Wow, Sonjia. I can’t even imagine what you went thru. My life has been so easy in comparison. Thank you for standing up for yourself and everyone else.

    • 17 meta
      July 15, 2011 at 6:13 pm

      Sonjia, thank you for sharing that horrible moment and for staying strong. Still so much more work to do.

    • July 15, 2011 at 7:12 pm

      Ahhh, I can Imagine the fright Sonjia

    • 19 Fred
      July 15, 2011 at 7:12 pm

      thanks for sharing this with us

    • July 15, 2011 at 7:41 pm

      Oh Sonjia, it’s all just beyond my comprehension, I can’t even begin to imagine what that experience must have been like, or the impact it must have had on you. And all these years later there are still so many filled with that same level of hate. It’s extraordinary.

    • 21 sam uk obama supporter
      July 15, 2011 at 7:54 pm

      Sonjia, what an incredibly brave thing to do, you inspire me! I can not imagine how hard that was for you, nor can I even begin to understand how awful those times were having only read about the civil rights struggle. I am not surprised that your father was proud of you. If my son were ever to find himself in trouble for standing up to injustice I would be proud too. Your account of your arrest is an inspiration.

    • 22 LunarSea
      July 15, 2011 at 10:04 pm

      Yeah, that kind of crap was rampant. We’ve come a long way, which makes what the teabaggers are doing all the more cynical and destructive. They really want to go back to some semblance of this. Who would’ve thought these feeling of superiority and hate was still so alive, albeit suppressed. Society demanded it be quieted. It was still there but kept in check these good many years until Sara the Quitter burst on the scene and made it okay again with the #mediafail ginning up the masses to promote their kabuki theater.

      Sarah was the worst thing that ever happened to this country and for every sick act of hate I hear about I will forever blame her and McChinless for hoisting her onto us.

      • 23 theo67
        July 16, 2011 at 2:33 am

        I agree with you that Sarah is one of the worst things to happen in this country, because she made it ok for all the crazies to come out. But she’s in good company with the corrupt media, Murdoch, Koch brothers, Limbaugh, Beck, Trump,Bachmann, Republican Congresspeople (for the most part), and ignorant voters/public. It’s a cesspool.

    • 24 Anonymous
      July 15, 2011 at 11:32 pm

      Thank you, sister, for making things easier for me. May I continue to do same in the projects that I work on.

    • 25 Anonymous
      July 15, 2011 at 11:39 pm

      Thank you, sister, for making things easier for me. May I continue to pass it on to others as I work on different projects at work.

    • 26 Betsy
      July 16, 2011 at 12:23 am

      I’m so sorry you had to go through that.

  9. 27 Ladyhawke
    July 15, 2011 at 5:49 pm

    Can you guys believe this man’s schedule??? A one hour press conference with the jackals, a chat with the astronauts, meeting Ruby Bridges and admiring that stunning Rockwell painting of her. Plus dealing with the children in the Republican party. I hope he can have some down time with the family tonight. What a week…… …

  10. July 15, 2011 at 5:49 pm

    This is so wonderful, thank you. I showed this painting to my son last night- and explained a bit about it.. I love that the ‘real Ruby’ is in this photo to further our discussion tonight.

  11. 31 meta
    July 15, 2011 at 5:51 pm

    Very moving article. The painting says it all.

  12. 32 Starm
    July 15, 2011 at 5:55 pm

    Thanks for this bit of history Chipsticks

  13. 33 Fred
    July 15, 2011 at 5:56 pm

    thank you for sharing that with us Chip

  14. 35 Obamaperson
    July 15, 2011 at 6:03 pm

    I found this story about the painting, and about the little girl, moving. I was alive when that happened. But somehow, I was not aware of that incident or the Norman Rockwell painting. What a remarkable woman! She does not express bitterness, but she does understand that this is something that must be worked on, day by day. It is too easy to slide back into old stereotypes, old rigid and racist ways of seeing anyone with a different skin color than we have as less worthy. She is right. Knowing each other as children makes a big difference.

  15. 37 MTmarilyn
    July 15, 2011 at 6:06 pm

    I remember all this but I was of an age and place where I didn’t totally understand it. My folks did try to explain. But growing up in a small town of all white, I did attend private christian HS and we had people from all over the world there, all colors. I just couldn’t understand them not being allowed to go to school with me in other places in the US. That picture is so moving. I am glad that you can only see Ruby’s face.

  16. 38 dotster
    July 15, 2011 at 6:09 pm

    Such a meaningful piece of art. I was reminded about a little book I received about that same time as this event, a little blondie girl in Iowa, but it had such an impact on me and changed much of the course of my life. Others have said the same about this moving little book. Some of you are probably familiar with it. It is “I Wonder Why” by Shirley Burden. It begins with “I wonder shy some people don’t like me” and then each page has a few words and beautiful black and white photos, words such as “I like rain….and cool woods….white snow at Christmas….clouds floating in a blue sky…and birds…..and cats…..and little puppies. I like the sea when it wears diamonds……and sand when it squeezes through my toes….. the taste of juicy red apples—–and pretty dresses…..and weddings——and babies”. And then the last page repeats “I wonder why some people don’t like me” and there is a photo of an adorable little black girl. It hit me like a thud. It was a very important little book in my life which I still have and shared with my 3 daughters.

    • July 15, 2011 at 7:18 pm

      Yeahhh, sounds like an Impressive book, but no I never read It, maybe I can search for It :-)

    • 40 EDP4BHO
      July 15, 2011 at 7:19 pm

      Whoever gave you that book loved you very much, enough to teach you what real humanity is.

    • 41 sam uk obama supporter
      July 15, 2011 at 8:21 pm

      Dotster it sounds like a beautiful book, just reading your post made me cry. I will see if it is available on amazon, I just know my son would love it too. He is becoming more vocal in his dislike of any form of discrimination getting into many a discussion with one of his class mates who seems to think it is ok to demonize a black kid in his class just because of the color of his skin. I even saw him talking to the bully’s mom the other week and when I asked my son what was going on he said that he wanted this child’s mom to know what he had said to his friend. (He has known the bully since kindergarten hence he knows his mom)

      Anyway, I digress, it sounds such a good book that I am looking forward to hopefully getting it and as for the picture, words can not describe how moving it is.

  17. July 15, 2011 at 6:13 pm

    I posted this yesterday. These are Ruby Bridges own words.

    “racism is a grown-up disease and we must stop using our children to spread it” Isn’t this the truth?

    To view Norman Rockwell’s pictures is to see life through his eyes.

    Through many dangers, toils and snares
    I have already come;
    ‘Tis Grace that brought me safe thus far
    and Grace will lead me home.

  18. 43 meta
    July 15, 2011 at 6:18 pm

    AP: PBO is having a meeting with the Dalai Lama on Saturday.

    OH MY! When asked who he admires, PBO once said two folks: Dalai Lama and Nelson Mandela

  19. 49 sam uk obama supporter
    July 15, 2011 at 6:19 pm

    Have I got computer gremlins or has the picture of Ruby been replaced by President Obama’s call to the space shuttle crew. The reason I ask is that I have been having a lot of computer problems latele.

    What a man!! Does PBO ever take a break, he works so dam hard for the good of America and the good of the world and it pisses me off that the congresscritters disrespect him and are willing to hold America hostage with the debt ceiling negotiations just to try to weaken and destroy this marvellous President. They will not succeed though as Barack Obama has more intelligence, integrety and goodness in his little fingernail than all the repub congresscritters put together. Apologies for rant, I just had to vent!!

    • 50 sam uk obama supporter
      July 15, 2011 at 6:21 pm

      I meant to say, before I started my rant about congresscritters, that I love BOTH the articles (Ruby Bridges and the shuttle).

      • 51 sam uk obama supporter
        July 15, 2011 at 6:24 pm

        OK, before you think I have gone crazy it IS computer gremlins my end. Just gone back to the top of the page and ‘Ruby’ is back again. Honestly you must think I am bonkers tonight! Lol!

    • July 15, 2011 at 6:24 pm

      Hiya Sam, your computer is fine, something crazy happened at this end! The space shuttle post replaced the Ruby Bridges post when I clicked ‘publish’ and then I got a WordPress confirmation message I never got before. Very odd. Yet more gremlins!

      • 55 Doris
        July 15, 2011 at 6:26 pm

        Heehee, thanks Chips.

      • 56 sam uk obama supporter
        July 15, 2011 at 6:27 pm

        Thanks Chipsticks – I have had gremlins my end too for the last couple days.

        Have a great weekend adn thanks for such a great site for all of us Obama supporters to come to for our daily (or hourly!) dose of sanity, you are a Godsend!

    • 58 Doris
      July 15, 2011 at 6:25 pm

      No we have gremlins. This thread disappeared for me too for a while and then came back. I thought it was me. I think we’re okay now. :D

  20. 61 SUE DUVALL SMITH
    July 15, 2011 at 6:56 pm

    I JUST ORDERED 2 OF THOSE PRINTS…ONE FOR ME AND ONE FOR MY FRIENDS WHO ADOPTED A CHILD FROM KENYA! IT’S PRECIOUS. CAN’T WAIT TO HANG IT IN MY HOUSE.

    • 62 Doris
      July 15, 2011 at 7:10 pm

      Awwwww Sue, you would do that dear heart. Let us know when you get them. I know that are going to be beautiful.

      • 63 HZ
        July 15, 2011 at 7:47 pm

        First, I would like to thank Chipsticks for posting this. This has been one of my favorites of the Norman Rockwell’s Collection. It is an iconic one. I would also like to say that Chipsticks is also a godsend because she opens this site up to many wonderful issues for our family to enjoy, to engage in with respectful conversations, and to inform our younger generations of what the seniors along with many dear ones here have had to endure to just get to where we are now having such wonderful conversations with and about our wonderful President. I did a seminar on this painting years ago to a wonderful diverse group of students, and they were totally interested in this painting and others teaching various tolerance and non-tolerance issues. It was a wonderful time, so when I saw this on our site today, tears rushed down my face with a sense of pride, joy, and a degree of elation that I can only describe. I hope that those of you who are so inspired from this painting and this story of Ruby will also thank our President for being brave to have this painting on displayed by his request in the WH. Also know that it was President Eisenhower who ordered the US Marchals to escort Ruby at that time. The Painting was on the Look magazine in the sixties around the time time of my second year in college, if I am not mistaken. From that cover being printed, there was a lot of unkind things spoken during that time. There is a lot of ways to share and teach the wonderful aspects of our history, getting along together, respecting the “bad times in our history” in ways to our children through the fine arts and the performing arts. I would hope that those of you who have chosen to become educators will embark on this beautifiul history and the teaching of tolerance and intolerance to our younger generation. This is the world that we want to leave to our beautiful young people. Sue, I admire you for ordering your prints, and I hope that you will enjoy them in such a beautiful way. In fact, I believe that you will. How precious indeed. Ruby also has a foundation for those of you who would like to learn more about her and what she is trying to do. Thanks again, Chipsticks for brining this to our beautiful family just as the President has found a way to bring it to the attention to the nation and the world. What a wonderful President we have. You all are so blessed to be living during President Barack Obama’s Presidency. We all can be those better angels. I had to think about all of the hard work that Chipsticks does each and everyday for all of us here in our family today real hard. I was returning home from a speciality food shop, and I encountered a very hateful person who had a very visible and ugly sign on his truck. He moved to my right while we were waiting(which was not suppose to be done) and I wondered wny he looked at me with such ugliness at that moment. Then as he raced in front of me, I saw the hateful sticker on his truck about President Obama(name and all) I did not use ver polite language, but I kept on him and finally, he got my drift, and sped away. I blew my horn continouslly and said some words that were not who I really am. The pain of living in the south and being treated with so much of this hate was so vivid to me today, that the horn blowing was more of the swelling of the past pain more than any hatefulness. Simply because I see how you all( the younger people) are taking this evil horn by its head and are moment by moment, dollar by dollar, and eventually vote by vote to remove this type of hate. So keep up the great spirits of goodness, and never stop learning how to bring the knowledge of the ugly injustices of the past inflict lasting wounds on your future. Work together to re-elect this great President, and pray that I will get every opportunity to help you. I will be 67 when we re-elect President Barack Obama. Pray for my dream again. You all will need a man like this again. I love you all, and I love Chipsticks for providing this beautiful haven to keep us aware, and connected together in love and respect. Sorry this is so long. Please forgive me.

        • July 15, 2011 at 8:00 pm

          No forgiveness needed, HZ. From the perspective of an oldie like me, even though the memories of the hate we saw when we were growing up can be vivid at times, it is really encouraging to see and hear today’s young people showing openness and greater awareness of our common humanity. As Ms Bridges pointed out hatred of people who are different is seeded by the adults.

          • 65 HZ
            July 15, 2011 at 9:38 pm

            Yes, indeed vcprezofan2. They are vivid at times as you stated, but we are determine to erase as much as possible with our core of goodness to leave a better humanity for our beautiful young people. I pledge my part. You are gracious.

        • 66 Frenchie08
          July 15, 2011 at 8:10 pm

          HZ that was so beautiful! It brought me to tears. Thank you for pouring your heart out in such open love and humility. Thank you again!

          • 67 HZ
            July 15, 2011 at 9:23 pm

            Frenchis08, I do understand. Let us turn those beautiful tears into the votes at the polls for President Barack Obama in 2012. That is how we fight the hatefulness that many of us encounter each and everyday across this country because of the beautiful gift of a man who occupies the Oval Office. We will prevail. So let us put those tears(and I have many myself) into a beautiful bottle for: Our Tears Turning Into Votes for Barack Obama in 2012.:

            • 68 Frenchie08
              July 16, 2011 at 1:01 am

              I will certainly follow your lead HZ! I am working very hard here in Missouri and with the encouragement and motivation I receive from you and others on this site, my resolve remains unshakable. OBAMA 2012! I am sooooo IN!

              • 69 HZ
                July 16, 2011 at 2:38 am

                Hold tight to your unshakable strength, Frenchie08. My thoughts will be keep near my bottle for you as well.

        • July 15, 2011 at 8:25 pm

          Oh HZ, that was just stunningly beautiful and powerful. I am sick to my stomach that you had that experience today with that driver, but rather than it lead to despair I’m going to take heart from your inspirational lead and know that “moment by moment, dollar by dollar, and eventually vote by vote” these people and their hate can, slowly but surely, be relegated to history. Thank you so much HZ, for your courage and kind heart, and thank you too for your lovely and fascinating memories of that painting.

          • 71 HZ
            July 15, 2011 at 9:14 pm

            Thank you Chipsticks and all of my dear family here for your thinking on this. I humbly wrote my heart. That is what makes this site so beautiful, Chipsticks, the courage and kind hearts working together to make this nation a better place to live, work, and enjoy it for all of us. We Will Not be distracted by a negative and hateful sign on a car, but we will stand up daily for the truth and the facts about our President. Love you all back. HZ

        • 72 Doris
          July 15, 2011 at 8:45 pm

          That was totally beautiful HZ. God bless you and I pray for your good health. Your words warmed my heart tonight. You are a gem.

        • July 15, 2011 at 11:55 pm

          Beautiful posts and thoughts from all tonite.

        • July 16, 2011 at 2:19 am

          It is well. This thread took me back and brought a lot of memories up. i knew Emmitt Till his death is still with me and dictates some of my actions to this day.

    • July 15, 2011 at 7:22 pm

      What a nice picture to have In your home, I like that, yes! :D

  21. 78 Claire
    July 15, 2011 at 7:23 pm

    I have this painting in my office. It was a birthday gift from a dear friend who has worked tirelessly on civil rights issues. I love seeing the President viewing it with Ruby Bridges. Pete Souza is a treasure.

  22. 80 zizi
    July 15, 2011 at 7:33 pm

    The events represented in that image slightly hint at the bigotry PBO himself suffered at the hands of children in Indonesia who threw stones at him, as recorded in Jannie Scott’s book about Stanley Ann Durnham.

    The epithet scribbled on the wall is no different from the racist insults hurled at PBO today. I bet he finds this historical moment frozen in this painting, to be very comforting,. That he was preceded in this historical journey by others who bore an even heavier cross. A truly sad commentary on America, STILL.

    • 81 EDP4BHO
      July 15, 2011 at 7:57 pm

      How much will it take to change things? And as Richard Pryor so comically asked…..”How long……?” You probably know the rest…LOL!

  23. 82 Doris
    July 15, 2011 at 8:00 pm

    Thanks Chips, you are a jewel. This is just precious and so special. Thanks for bringing it here to your diary.

  24. 83 meta
    July 15, 2011 at 8:00 pm

    Oh my gosh, the video is terrific. THX, Chips.

  25. July 15, 2011 at 8:00 pm

    Here’s a powerful juxtaposition that I remembered when I heard this painting was going to be displayed in the White House.

    I imagine it captures some of what is in President Obama’s mind as well when he looks at it.

    • 85 LunarSea
      July 15, 2011 at 10:21 pm

      That was really a great juxtaposition. And yes, it is indicative of how far we’ve come. And yes, most youth today will have none of this division and hate.

      They are the generation that will grow up with handicapped people as well as gay and interracial couples as part of the norm. Not to mention religious tolerance, a global connectedness and expansive social awareness that is going to move this world in the right direction. As citizens of the one great neighborhood called planet earth.

      The crazies are loud but they are outnumbered. We just have to banish them once again into the shadows. I have a great faith in the youth of today, provided we all survive the current political madness.

      • 86 lmrj
        July 16, 2011 at 1:42 pm

        AMEN…..
        The old saying is that the squeaky wheel gets the oil. The loudest may be getting the attention, but there is still the silent majority… and not the ones the right used to talk about. The present not-so-silent majority is us.

  26. 87 Fred
    July 15, 2011 at 8:02 pm

    that is simply fabulous :D

  27. July 15, 2011 at 8:12 pm

    Oh the video is such an exclamation point to this, thank you for posting it. I am so proud of our President for hanging this in the Oval Office- this is something everyone should see. thank you Sir.

  28. 89 lamh34
    July 15, 2011 at 8:24 pm

    I’m a NOLA native like Ruby and this school was actually in my neighborhood. A few of my family members childrens attended Frantz elementary. Ruby like so many other in our neighborhood lost her home to Hurricane Katrina like so many others.

    Thx for posting this

    • 90 Doris
      July 15, 2011 at 8:48 pm

      Oh lamh34, thanks for sharing this. I am so sorry that your neighborhood was lost in the storm. I will pray for you and Ruby and your neighbors that you will continue to recover. I know that most of your area will not come back, but thank God for your wonderful memories that will always be with you.

  29. 91 Anonymous
    July 15, 2011 at 8:43 pm

    Love, love, l-o-o-o-ve it all, Chips! I love the historic Rockwell painting featured in the photographs (It says so much about both the greatness and cruelty of our country) . I love that Ruby Bridges is actually standing in living form in front of the painting featuring herself. And I love that our nation’s AA President –himself a target of subtle and overt racism–recognizes the significance of having such a painting on display in a hallway near the Oval Office, and has invited “little Ruby Bridges” to come visit him at the Whitehouse, What a historical moment in time!

  30. 92 Karen Sr.
    July 15, 2011 at 8:58 pm

    Six years old. She thought it must be Mardi Gras.

    And the beat goes on….

    What now?

  31. July 15, 2011 at 9:10 pm

    I love, love, l-o-o-o-o-ve these pictures, Chipsticks—especially, the first photo. I love Rockwell’s historic painting featured in the photo. (The painting says so much about both the greatness and cruelty of this country). I love the fact that Ruby Bridges is alive and well and standing in front of the iconic painting in which she is portrayed. And I love that our first AA President–himself a target of both subtle and overt racism–has chosen not only to display this iconic painting in a hallway near the Oval Office, but he has also chosen to invite “little Ruby” to come to the Whitehouse. What a historic moment in time!

  32. 94 Kasai
    July 15, 2011 at 9:21 pm

    Thanks so much for posting this amazing powerful piece of art….I can’t help but tear up. My heart breaks today, even after 50 years of progress, our President is not given the respect he deserves, for that matter most blacks still fighting for equality and justice, most of them in prison. I thank Ann Dunham for instilling courage and determination in, little Barack, just as this little girl in this painting.
    I thank the President for shaking all the negativity and hatred always hoping for the better angels in us. We are truly truly blessed to have a Leader such as President Barack Obama.

    I found this article, I can see why the President appreciate this painting, I am sure He see’s something in him.
    .
    ” Ann tried to compensate for the absence of black people in her son’s life. At night, she came home from work with books on the civil rights movement and recordings of Mahalia Jackson. Her aspirations for racial harmony were simplistic. “She was very much of the early Dr. [Martin Luther] King era,” Obama says. “She believed that people were all basically the same under their skin, that bigotry of any sort was wrong and that the goal was then to treat everybody as unique individuals.” Ann gave her daughter, who was born in 1970, dolls of every hue: “A pretty black girl with braids, an Inuit, Sacagawea, a little Dutch boy with clogs,” says Soetoro-Ng, laughing. “It was like the United Nations.”

    Read more: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1729685,00.html#ixzz1SE5eVdEN

    Thanks again Chip:-)

    • 95 HZ
      July 15, 2011 at 9:30 pm

      Kasai, thanks for sharing this article. I had read a version of that, and I thought of how his mother prepared him for these days that he is living. We are indeed blessed.

  33. July 15, 2011 at 9:47 pm

    To me this reminds you of how far we have come, but the Tea-Republicans let us know we still have a way to go. Having Ruby there at the White House is so special. That picture is pricless.

  34. 97 ribletsonthepan
    July 15, 2011 at 10:25 pm

    Another fantastic must-read, “The Problem We All Live With” – The Truth About Rockwell’s Painting. http://hubpages.com/hub/The-Problem-We-All-Live-With—Norman-Rockwell-the-truth-about-his-famous-painting

    And BBC’s podcast of the interview of Ruby Bridges for the 50th anniversary. http://rubybridgesfoundation.org/2010/11/bbc-world-service-witness-interview/

    “Ruby Bridges in her award winning childrens book Through My Eyes writes: “The author John Steinbeck was driving through New Orleans with his dog, Charley, when he heard about the racist crowds that gathered outside the Franz school each morning to protest its integration. He decided to go see what was happening.”

    “He especially wanted to see a group of women who came to scream at me and at the few white children who crossed the picket lines and went to school. (At this time, I didn’t know that there were other children in the building. We were kept apart.) The women were known as the Cheerleaders, and their foul language even shocked a man as worldly as Steinbeck.”

    “I never met John Steinbeck, but he seemed to sympathize with what I was going through. He wrote about me in a book called Travels With Charley”.

  35. 98 Puddin
    July 15, 2011 at 11:22 pm

    I have seen that print many times, but today, watching Ruby Bridges and the President standing shoulder to shoulder, looking at the print and hearing her voice, her words, make me want to have a print of my own… so powerful!

  36. 99 Gwen Day-Fuller
    July 16, 2011 at 12:52 am

    As a child I remember walking the streets of Alexandria, Va unable to go into any of the restaurants or bakeries to have a hot drink on a cold day. I can remember going into Shuman’s Bakery with my mom and my aunts to buy pastries unable to go in to sit down to eat. These are moments that never leave one’s psyche. I think many of you will understand the feelings evoked in the poem I wrote while teaching in Newton,MA. You can see that my feelings run deep and I can only imagine the feelings of the young girl in the Norman Rockwell painting.

    Racism rivets the soul
    It wraps its insidious tenacles
    Around the neck of mankind
    And leaves its indelible mark
    On all the world

    Deeper than undying sorrow
    Colder than the icy snowcaps
    Of distant mountains

    Darker than a sky
    That lacks the light of the sun
    Scarier than the eyes of a man
    Who has lost all hope
    Racism rivets the soul

    Let’s hope that we will all continue to work to build a world where no child should ever have to experience the pain of exclusion. We still have so much work to do. Let’s continue to support President Obama and First Lady Obama.

  37. 102 @Mel_Mc_III
    July 16, 2011 at 1:16 am

    “I want to say ‘Thank you, Lord’, for all you’ve done for me!”

    It could have been me with no shoes, no clothes, no food, disrespected, and left educationally naked.

    Wow, I’m filled up right now which is why I’m writing this so late at night. I can’t think of words to describe my state of mind other than to say that progress is eternally beautiful. And progress shall continue. Mothers and fathers, parent our children and our nations. Raise them in the ways that they should go. We are who we have been waiting for fam.

    Thank you all for this inspiration. I hope to never forget this moment of “hope”.

    Here is to the next generation! <3

    Amen.

    (young black man from the South; 1st generation college grad; recently completed master's degree; and love public service – gotta do my part)

  38. July 16, 2011 at 1:20 am

    Thanks for sharing this story. I visited the Norman Rockwell Museum in western Massachusetts some years ago, and seeing this painting up close and personal was the highlight of the entire collection for me. It’s just an amazing work of art not only in its subject matter but in its execution. The framing of the little girl, isolated among the big headless impersonal guards, the implied violence of the spattered tomato suggesting blood… it just gives you chills to be in its presence.

  39. July 16, 2011 at 2:31 am

    My heart is so full Gwen. Thank you for sharing this with us. Yes, I hope so as well. In fact, I pray dailly for this to happen. Our younger generation deserves the best of our human nature.

  40. 105 debra
    July 16, 2011 at 11:58 am

    This is a wonderful story about Ruby Bridges. It starts off with Ruby walking alone into that schools class rooms and ends up with other parents also going against the racist crowds As President Obama said “There is always Hope”.


Comments are currently closed.

@BarackObama

@WhiteHouse

@FLOTUS

@blog44

@PeteSouza

Enter your email address to receive notifications of new posts by email.

@TheObamaDiary

@NerdyWonka

@DaRiverZkind

@Lib_Librarian

@amk4obama

@zizii2

Categories

Archives

Blog Stats

  • 27,511,266 hits

WH Flickr

P092214PS-0654

P091614PS-0175

P091114PS-0521

P091014PS-0264

P070114PS-0159

P070114PS-0507

P070114PS-0697

P070114PS-0941

P070214PS-0286

P070214PS-0509

More Photos

%d bloggers like this: