By Special to the Daily World
Who Killed Emmett Till?
The murder of Emmett Till in August of 1955 became one of the pivotal moments of the American Civil Rights Movement because of the tireless efforts of his mother Mamie Till Mobley.
Emmett, who was from Chicago, was visiting his relatives in Money, Miss., when he was kidnapped, tortured and murdered for whistling at a White woman.
His mother fought to bring his body back to Chicago and then showed the world what they had done to him. Americans from all walks of life were appalled at the horrible pictures of his disfigured body which were printed in magazines like Jet, Ebony and Life.
For the first time there was visible proof of the horrors of the racism and terror that many Blacks were experiencing in the South.
The documentary, “Who Killed Emmett Till?” directed by Ray Metoyer, takes a look at the time line of the murder with firsthand interviews from witnesses who were there when Emmett was kidnapped from his family.
We see the barn where he was tortured and killed and look back on the murder investigation, where his killers were allowed to walk away without even a slap on the wrist.
Through the film we learn more about the vicious climate of hatred that permeated the South and how the Emmett Till murder was part of a much larger campaign to maintain a climate of fear for southern Blacks, who weren’t even allowed to vote at that time.
The case today has led to new investigations into dozens of unsolved murders from the early days of the fight against segregation. But we also learn that there is an undying interest in Emmett Till from people all over the world, including Emmett Till’s family and the Emmett Till Legacy Foundation (ETLF) who still want answers today.
In the film you can also witness how the ETLF, established in 2005 by co-founder and Till family member, Deborah Watts, commemorates the memory of Emmett’s murder and dedicates its ongoing efforts to turning an ugly part of American history into a positive, inspired and empowered future for youth in America and across the world. What a great story about moving forward beyond tragedy!
A “Who Killed Emmett Till?” seven-minute preview can be viewed at http://www.emmetttilllegacyfoundation.com/videos.php (scroll down to the 6th video) or you can check out the You Tube favorite with over 165,000 views, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BL1vMFwZEus
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