Pellissippi State hosts panel on Jim Crow laws for Black History Month

Imagine riding the bus for hours to attend public school when a much better school is nearby or taking a long trip, not knowing if a motel or restaurant will serve you at the end of an exhausting day.

The participants of Pellissippi State Community College’s Feb. 23 panel discussion, “Living With Jim Crow: Growing Up in the Segregated South,” don’t have to imagine what it was like. They lived it.

Robert Boyd and Joy Ingram, both associate professors at Pellissippi State, and Freddie Owens, a decorated Vietnam veteran, serve on the panel and recount living with the Jim Crow laws.

The panel discussion is 12:30-1:30 p.m. in the Goins Building Auditorium on the Pellissippi Campus, 10915 Hardin Valley Road. The community is invited to attend the free event.

The Jim Crow laws emerged in Southern states after the Civil War. First enacted in the 1880s by legislators who were bitter about the loss to the North and the end of slavery, the laws separated the races in all walks of life.

The resulting legislative barrier to equal rights created a system that favored whites and repressed blacks. The institutionalized form of inequality grew in subsequent decades with help from the U.S. Supreme Court. Jim Crow laws were finally abolished in the 1960s through the efforts of the Civil Rights Movement.

The panel discussion is sponsored by the college’s Liberal Arts Department and presented in celebration of Black History Month.

Learn more about Pellissippi State at www.pstcc.edu/admissions or call (865) 694-6400. To request accommodations for a disability, contact the executive director of Human Resources and Affirmative Action at (865) 694-6607 or humanresources@pstcc.edu.

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