Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Tuesday Night Crying Fest

Well, it looks as if my tuesday night American History Through Film class is going to be a tear-jerker. I arrived home with puffy red eyes and a runny nose. We watched one of the best/worst documentaries I have ever seen, Spike Lee's "Four Little Girls." It's about the 16th Street First Baptist Church bombing in Birmingham Alabama of 1963, in which four little girls were killed. Enraged white supremacists purposely planted dynamite by the Sunday School classrooms in retaliation for the national publicity given to the church's civil rights marches.

The surviving family members of the four little girls are interviewed and recount the events that lead up to the famous bombing and how it still affects their lives even today. Spike Lee does a brilliant job of weaving the raw personal experiences of these families and the larger historical context of the era together.

Denise McNair, Carole Robertson, Cynthia Wesley, and Addie Mae Collins ceased to be notorious causualties of the Civil Rights Movement, and become REAL children. I left feeling like I was thoroughly acquainted with them, their families, and their culture. It's a terrible feeling of loss and grief, and I can't imagine how their families have come through it, struggle with it, and live with it.
With some of the comments left on my blog whenever the topic of race comes up, I think it is imperative for people to watch documentaries like these, especially when a culture of racism still lingers in parts of the south. Watch and be forever changed.


Tonya said...

Tia, you will never make it through without being a soggy heap so just invest in a few boxes of kleenex. I am the same way. I get pulled right in to the stories of people and feel so empathetic that I embarrass myself. I try not to cry loudly, but it would just feel so good to get it out. Landon just pats me sweetly. He's a nice man.:)

Tia Lynn said...

I tell you Tonya, I was sitting next to a bunch of big "bubba-ish" guys and they had tears streaming down their faces, too! That's how bad it was. I was verging on the "heaving-crying," now that's nothing compared to Maura's laugh-cry combo, but it's still pretty disruptive.

I think for the first time, I understood how the Bible talks about people being so overwelmed with grief that they tore their clothes and fell prostrate on the floor. For the first time, that seemed pretty appropriate to me.

diane said...

O, I don't know if I could make it through this filn! Terribly Sad. That entire period in American hitory is horrifying to think about, but important to be aware of.

Tonya said...

Awwww. I miss Maura's laugh-cry combo.

Once, I was watching a movie with my sisters and several men (Landon being one of them) was a movie about some kids in WWII Germany... and I was sitting there crying semi-quietly until this scene where the star's (a teenager) little brother was running down the street crying and yelling at the top of his lungs, after the Nazi truck that was hauling off his big brother, and I burst into loud screaming sobs along with both of my sisters. It was simultaneous and we scared the men to death. LOL! They still talk about it.