The Tulsa Race Riot is the nastiest incident in America's nasty history of racism, and it's not as long ago as one might hope.
Personally, I hope America one day fully comes to terms with her history, rather than continually sweeping things under the rug, leaving people uneducated about history innocently asking why others, educated about history, can't just "get over it."
It took a long time and a lot of reading, so I'm not surprised when I see people respond with disbelief and dismissal to things I (now) know are definitely true. After all, schools are generally operated by and supportive of some central authority or another (government, church, etc), so it's not really in their interests to teach us to question authority.
Plus, reality is exhausting and sad.
There's a million interesting stories in history.
Covering the war of independence and the civil war in huge detail but skipping the less palatable parts of its own history results in an huge portion of the country not understanding what the effected groups are complaining about.
Think: if you aren’t aware of the Tuskegee syphilis experiments or the difference in quality of treatment at black vs white hospitals you think black people are just being stupid for not trusting the medical establishment.
If you don’t know about things like the Tulsa bombing you think black people are being hysterical when they say the government wants to exterminate them.
How many Americans know that the Japanese internment camps resulted in many japanese Americans losing all of their assets: many (most?) didn’t get their homes back when they were released from imprisonment.
The purpose of history is to teach history, and selective coverage results in people having a functionally delusional view of other people’s experience.
To the extent that if you bring these things up people think you’re attacking America, when in reality you’re just trying to get people to avoid repeating past mistakes.
This is pretty common among other countries. A big one is Britain's Colonial history. It isn't part of school curriculum in Britain.
The Wilmington Insurrection is comparable and similarly unknown. Totally shameful, bothxrhat they happened and further that we aren't aware.
In case people are wondering why it is all over the press, the HBO series Watchmen (apparently, only tangentially related to the comic/movie of the same name) just launched this past Sunday and it opens with a dramatization of this event.
Reading about it doesn't really capture what it is like to see the dramatization.
I imagine something similar could happen today where a fake news tweet/story ignites violence between two political/religious/ethnic groups that are on edge with each other.
100 years later, thank God things moved in a better direction. Still progress to be made, but we're definitely in a better place than this.