October 21

1865—Jamaican national hero and independence advocate, George William Gordon, is unjustly arrested and sentenced to death for his struggle to free the Caribbean island nation from White minority rule. The son of a White man and a Black slave woman, Gordon is considered one of Jamaica’s most significant national heroes.

DexterKing1950—Earl Lloyd becomes first Black person to play in an NBA game.

1994—Dexter King, youngest son of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., is named head of SCLC—an organization founded by his slain father. Ironically, Dexter’s sister Rev. Bernice King would later be named to head the civil rights group.

October 22

1906—Three thousand Blacks demonstrated and rioted in Philadelphia to protest a theatrical production of Thomas Dixon’s racist play—“The Clansman.” The play essentially praised the Ku Klux Klan while demeaning Blacks.

1936—Black Panther Party co-founder Bobby Seale is born in Dallas, Texas.

1953—Clarence S. Green becomes the first African-American certified as a neurological surgeon.

2009—The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issues a devastating report showing the number of new HIV/AIDS infections was declining for all population groups—except homosexual males, which the CDC refers to as MSM—men who have sex with men. Among MSMs, the highest infection rate was found among young Black males aged 13 to 24.


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