I remember walking through my neighborhood one day not too long ago, and seeing that this had appeared:
I had no idea that I had been living a few blocks from the site of Homer Plessy’s arrest, the beginning one of the most important Supreme Court cases in the long battle for civil rights, Plessy v. Ferguson. Another thing I did not know until recently was that Homer Plessy’s arrest on the train was not a random event, but rather a well-planned act of civil disobedience by “The Citizens Committee,” which was a coalition of black and white southerners who were fighting for civil rights at the end of nineteenth century. Today is the 118th anniversary of that day.
So, this evening at 6, New Orleans Center for Creative Arts, the Crescent City Peace Alliance, and the Plessy & Ferguson Foundation are having “A Celebration of Progress: Homer Plessy Day 2010.” Carl Leblanc and the Big Easy Street Team are opening the event with a second-line from the site of Homer Plessy’s arrest at the corner of Press and Royal Streets to NOCCA’s campus.
“The centerpiece of this year’s celebration will be a performance by NOCCA’s drama division entitled SE-PA-RATE: Plessy v. Ferguson. The play is an original work exploring segregation from 1890 to 2010. This evolving performance piece was created by NOCCA students, working with faculty member Silas Cooper and members of the acclaimed Tectonic Theater Project. The performance will be followed by a question and answer session with the students; Keith Plessy and Phoebe Ferguson of the Plessy & Ferguson Foundation; author Keith Weldon Medley; and Reggie Lawson of the Crescent City Peace Alliance. The talkback will be moderated by Dr. Raynard Sanders, and it will be followed by a casual reception.”