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‘Black Wall Street’ author on teaching Tulsa riots in school: “We have to work through the discomfort”


100 years ago, decades of Black economic success were essentially erased after a riotous white mob attacked the prosperous Greenwood District of Tulsa, Oklahoma. However, Oklahoma didn’t include this atrocity as a part of its school curriculum until the year 2002 and it wasn’t until 2019 that the state's Education Department specified what aspects of it should be taught and how to teach it for different grade levels. Hannibal Johnson, Chair of the Education Committee for the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre Centennial Commission and author of ‘Black Wall Street’, tells Ali Velshi why a new Oklahoma law may make some teachers reluctant to teach “hard history”.