To commemorate Juneteenth, Courageous Conversation Global Foundation, a nonprofit devoted to elevating racial consciousness and interracial healing through training and development, has taken out a full-page ad in the Oklahoma Eagle, one of the oldest Black-owned publications in the U.S.—but it’s not just an ad.
The page, which reads “Being Black is not a crime” in all-white type against a black background, is also meant to serve as a sign for those planning to peacefully protest in Tulsa, Oklahoma tomorrow. That’s when President Trump will be holding a rally, marking his return to the campaign trail after the pandemic had put it on hold.
Originally, the POTUS had scheduled the rally for today, but drew fire for seemingly commandeering a time meant to celebrate the end of slavery in the U.S. Moreover, Tulsa is home to what’s been called the worst incident of racial violence in U.S. history, the Tulsa Race Riots. Over 18 hours from May 31 through June 1 in 1921, white mobs had attacked African American residents and decimated their businesses in a thriving area that had come to be known as “Black Wall Street.” The riots resulted in the destruction of more than 1,000 homes and companies and hundreds of deaths.. Critics saw Trump’s decision to campaign in Tulsa as a nod to —or, in the words of Senator Kamala Harris, “a welcome home party,” for white supremacists.
“In America, Black people are three times more likely to be killed by police than white people," said Glenn Singleton, president of CCGF in a statement. "The goal of the ad is twofold: to inform and to equip people in Tulsa with a poster that can be used to make their voices heard on Saturday, June 20,”
“With the date, location and timing of the rally, it felt necessary for us to make a statement on the ground in Tulsa,” added Rony Castor, associate creative director at Goodby Silverstein & Partners, the agency behind the ad. “We should all hold ourselves accountable. If you can use your voice, you should do it. This is just our way of using ours.”
Along with the print ad, CCGF and GS&P are running a digital billboard ad today and tomorrow near downtown Tulsa.
This is just the latest in GS&P’s work for CCGF. Previously, the agency created the disturbing “Not a Gun” and “Not a Crime” ads, which have highlighted the disproportionate risks Blacks face in everyday life the U.S. as well as the absurd circumstances that have led to their deaths.