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Melba Patillo Beals' Warriors Don't Cry

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Warriors Don't Cry : Searing Memoir of Battle to Integrate Little Rock

The Brown vs. Board of Education Doctrine states, “ We conclude in the field of Education the doctrine of “separate but equal” has no place separate educational facilities are inherently unequal. Therefore, we hold the plaintiffs and others similarly situated for whom the actions have been brought are, by reason of the segregation complained of, deprived of the equal protection of the laws guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment. THIS REQUIRED THE DESEGREGATION OF SCHOOLS ACROSS AMERICA.

Melba Patillo Beal's was one of the nine students that were chosen to intragate Central High School in 1957. She kept a diary of all her thoughts while intragation was being carried out. Almost forty years after the fact she decided to tell her story by writing the book Warrior’s Don’t Cry. Melba Beals gives us a history lesson and as true a story of coming age in America at a certain time and place as one could hope to find.

The title Warrior’s Don’t Cry came from her grandmother’s saying to her, “ Everybody’s a warrior on the battlefield for the Lord”, and she used to sing a song, “ I’m on the battlefield for my Lord”. And so it comes from that, from her singing, and from her experience she had with the 101st Airborne, the soldiers who were warrior’s, who came down to guard the nine of them when they were going to school at Central High School.

The setting was Little Rock, Arkansas, Central High School. 1957 was the year; it was like a major bastion of white segregation in the South because it was ranked among the top high schools in the country. And it was where the elite children of Little Rock attended school. And it was, one believes, the last place they would have wanted black children come. And in order to stay there, get there, and be there, President Eisenhower, indeed intimately had to send soldiers- warriors. September of 1957, we’re really talking about the whole period because in 1954 Brown vs. board of education said, “ Separate is not equal”, and thus began this whole event of the south to integrate, and not to integrate, and this whole almost warring like environment or atmosphere- where in most cases white people said, “ NO, we’re not going to integrate. We don’t care what the Supreme Court says”. And federal court judges said, “ Yes, you will integrate”. And so then e...

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...n charge of Melba’s safety while in Central High School. He was a white man that Melba actually trusted her life with. Even when the kids pushed, hit, and spit at her he told her that she was a warrior she had to fight to survive. He explained to her that he would not always be there right behind her to protect her; she had to begin to figure out how to handle the kids. Both Danny and her grandmother’s words of wisdom and encouragement kept Melba in tact.

I found this book to be very useful as far as teaching what exactly went on during desegregation. This is indeed a very informative but interesting way for learning the information. I was read the book I was in to it, I wanted to go on and read more because I had no idea that all this went on. While discussing the book with my father, he also told me that some of this was going on when he was in school. I never knew that either. I felt emotion kind ok like I was there, it told you all the details and I like that. It is hard reading this book knowing that there was actual time when people behaved in that manner. I think this book will maybe even change people’s perspective on life as a whole. Excellent selection for students!!!