AMERICUS — Trouble, trouble, trouble
Hush! Hush! Somebody’s calling MY name! Oh my Lord, oh my Lord, what shall I do? Oh my Lord, it has hit me! After much thought and prayer, I must speak up and I must speak out.
I was born in Americus, Sumter County, Georgia during a time of economic depression and of terrible racial relations. The African Americans were segregated and treated as history has taught us, very poorly. I went on the A.S. Staley High School which was built by the Workman’s Progress Administration (Federal Government). I remained on my side of town, all of those years, and was able to excel and go to college. I came back home in 1967, after college, to raise my children and to begin teaching. I worked hard and I tried to better my community through service and participation. Well, I see now that I am living in the same community as I did during my early years, an evil of segregation particularly pertaining to the school situation.
The Sumter County School System, with a few persons led by Michael Busman and Roy Brooks, has gone back to the pre-fifties ... During my tenure in the schools of Americus and Sumter County (1943-1955), the county educated their black students in grades one through seven and then the few who could come to the Americus system, A.S. Staley High School, to finish their education until 1957. Then lo and behold, in 1958, the city and county decided that the latter would do the honors by building Sumter County High School on Rucker Street. The complete staff, principal, and teachers from Staley went to Sumter High. Oh, by the way, have I told you that the white students attended Union High in Leslie, Georgia and Plains High in Plains, Georgia.
Citizens and others who live in Americus and Sumter County should use your common sense and realize that a few people are using these mean tactics to tamper with the makeup of the school board. Those six members of the school board: Edith Ann Hollis Green, who is a very intelligent woman, also served on the Americus City School board. Three of the members are my former students; Kelvin Pless, Michael Lewis, and Willa Fitzpatrick. Alice Green, a retired teacher, and Carolyn Whitehead all have the creditability to serve and serve well. As I look back, there is no evidence of any former group of board members being so harshly criticized.
God is looking at you. Yes, God is watching. A few people have had the unmitigated gall to attempt to get the six black board members fired from their jobs. Those people responsible for these actions against the elected members of the Board should be punished.
Hush! Hush! Somebody’s calling YOUR name! Oh, my Lord, Oh my Lord what will you do?