On this day fifty-one years ago, the world lost four promising little girls due to pure, unadulterated hatred. A bomb exploded some time before Sunday morning services at the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham. Unfortunately such acts were commonplace given the blatant racism faced by African-Americans throughout the country, but especially in the deep south.
The young girls, Addie Mae Collins, Cynthia Wesley, Denise McNair and Carole Robertson lost their lives that morning. Many others were injured. Unfortunately, very little has changed regarding race relations America but the date and time. The violent protests that ensued after the little girls’ deaths mirror those happening in Ferguson, Missouri in response to the killing of 18-year-old Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager who was gunned down while walking home on Aug. 9.
In memory of Cynthia, Addie Mae, Denise, and Carole, here is Spike Lee’s 1997 documentary based on the incident, “Four Little Girls.”