A screening of the 2012 documentary “Slavery by Another Name” was the catalyst for a community discussion on racism July 21 at Salem Heights, the central house of the Sisters of the Precious Blood.
The documentary details how African-Americans continued to be bound in slavery in the Deep South following the Emancipation Proclamation by such means as convict labor. A discussion centered on how the issue is relevant today followed the screening. More than 30 Dayton-area residents and about a dozen Precious Blood Sisters participated.
The event was sponsored by the Sisters of the Precious Blood and Weavers of Justice, a collaborative of parishes and Catholic organizations to address social justice issues in Dayton. The collaborative has made racism in the community one of its areas of focus this year. Other screenings of the documentary and similar conversations will occur thorugh the region.
“I think people left with a renewed sense of developing good relations and taking some action on the issue of racism,” said Pam Long, regional director of the Catholic Social Action Office of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati. “For many people in the audience who are Caucasian this a new bit of history that they weren’t aware of. For others who are African-American this was a history that their families lived.”
- Story and photos by Dave Eck