Today, on the 50th anniversary of the Orangeburg Massacre and two days after the murder of one of South Carolina's most prominent advocates of social justice, Muhiyyidin d'Baha, in New Orleans, I would like to invite all South Carolinians of good conscience to "Beyond Mother Emanuel and the Confederate Flag: A Symposium on Race, Culture, and Understanding," to be held at Francis Marion University in Florence February 26, 27, and 28. All events are free and open to the public.
The purpose of the event is to place the thorny issues of race and justice at the forefront of discourse on the Francis Marion campus, where the student body includes roughly equal number of blacks and whites, and in the Pee Dee region and South Carolina more broadly.
Among the featured guests are veteran journalist and author Jack Bass; former mayor of Charleston Joe Riley; distinguished academic and survivor of the Orangeburg Massacre Dr. Cleveland Sellers; renowned visual artist Leo Twiggs; Columbia activist Kevin Alexander Gray; and a number of other scholars, journalists, and activists. Each day includes a keynote lecture, a panel discussion, and a reception.
An exhibit of Twiggs' work, entitled "Requiem for Mother Emanuel," opened February 4 at the Florence County Library and runs until the end of the month.
The schedule for the symposium is here.