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Life and Death Issues



by Zachary Husser

I played on my St. Elizabeth high school team’s undefeated season as we went 18-0 in Wilmington, Delaware, but Racism was alive and well!

On Sunday, March 7, 1965, the Racist Police of Selma, Alabama attacked a group of young people protesting as the started to cross the Edmund Pettus Bridge. Today, in 2015, fifty years later, Selma officials paid tribute to the late President Lyndon Johnson for the Voting Rights Act. The attack on demonstrators at the Edmund Pettus Bridge preceded a Selma-to-Montgomery march, which occurred two weeks later in 1965. Both helped build momentum for congressional approval of the Voting Rights Act later that year in 1965.


Malcolm X assassinated in New York City at the Audubon Ballroom on 165th Street and Broadway in Upper Manhattan. I remember the time and date very well because the tragedy was announced over our schools speak system. It was an a peculiar situation for me because I was the only person in my high school classroom that was crying from the pain of hearing that story. A few years earlier, I was in that same high school and another message came over the speaker system that President John F. Kennedy had been assassinated in Dallas, Texas. Everyone in the school, more than a thousand students, teachers, and staff were crying. I noticed the paradox and until this day, that reflection has been in my mind and heart.

In the music scene, We Black folk were listening to My Girl by the Temptations; Back in My Arms Again by The Supremes; I Can’t Help Myself by the Four Tops; Shot Gun by Junior Walker; I’ll Be Doggone by Marvin Gaye; Papa’s Got A Brand New Bag by James Brown; and Rescue Me by Fontella Bass. The message was coming to Us through Our Music.

According to the Fortune 500 statistics, the ten top businesses in 1965 were in this order and they are General Motors, Exxon Mobil, Ford Motors, General Electric, Mobil Oil, Chrysler Motors, United States Steel, Texaco Oil, IBM, and Gulf Oil. All of these companies employed very few Black Folk and had almost none in top powerful position with influence.

In the National Football League, the Green Bay Packers defeat the Cleveland Browns to become the Champions. In the NBA, the Championship was won by the Boston Celtics giving that organization it’s 7th Championship. In this same 1965 year, the MLB Championship was won by the Los Angeles Dodgers and Sandy Koufax was the MVP of the series. Oh yes, the UCLA Bruins won the College Championship in basketball. Coach Wooden was on his way building that legacy. The following season, a great high school player from New York City came to UCLA and his name was Ferdinand Lewis Alcindor, but most of Us know him as Kareem Abdul Jabbar.

The below list of books were being read by many of us because we believed in staying up on educational, cultural, and civil/civic issues that affected our daily lives.

James Baldwin, Going to Meet the Man Amiri Baraka, The Dead Lecturer Heinrich Böll, The Clown Alex Haley The Autobiography of Malcolm X

Read more: Top News Stories from 1965 http://www.infoplease.com/year/1965.html#ixzz3TrtaWfGT

I’m sending this researched information to All of You so We can all Start Writing Our Story. WE need to tell it like it was and how it is today. Our involvement in life during our time on this planet is a testimonial as well as pathway to do better for Our Young People. Make it your business to do the time line of a year that affected your life and times becoming an activist in a Group that is doing the work to Save Ourselves. We’re the ones and What Group do You belong to?

In the Interest of Telling Our Story,

Brother Zachary C. Husser, National Communication Advisor
The Fathers in Education Campaign, Incorporated

Note: This is just a short look into what are some of the things that partly shaped my development from a young boy into an inquisitive young man that tells it like I see it all the time!

Zachary Cornell Husser is a NY/NJ Community Organizer and member of the Columbia University men’s basketball teams of 1967–70. You can find him on Facebook and Twitter.

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