January 25, 2011, Turkey Creek, Mississippi]----does what he does best, political and social satire and I enjoy his weekly show enormously. Many have said it's the place they go to for honest, hard-hitting news-- which is the height of irony.
I admit, I too watch The Daily Show hosted by Stewart weekdays on Comedy Central for an unbiased, sharp edged, unfiltered, albeit humorous, version of the news. What that says about the state of our media is frankly, quite troubling. However let me not digress.
I recently saw a piece he did on Turkey Creek, Mississippi and beneath the humor and brilliantly done satire, the stark truth was awful to behold.
African Americans have made Turkey Creek their home since 1966, when freed slaves founded the community. It's the residents, heart, spirit, culture. What has been allowed to transpire there is--on second thought--let me leave you to be the judge.
Turkey Creek has since become the dumping ground for toxins and undesirable developments. Health hazards such as chemical and sewage plants have been erected smack dab in the midst of this community. One chemical plant even caught fire and leaked waste into the soil and water of Turkey Creek.
Many of their wetlands have been reportedly paved over to construct an airport and housing developments, which in turn made Turkey Creek quite susceptible to mass flooding during Hurricane Katrina.
A cemetery, where African Americans had been buried for centuries, was--believe it or not--paved over to erect a housing complex.
According to one local resident Derrick Evans, their repeated cries for help went unanswered, unnoticed by city officials and organisations.
That is until one organisation stepped in to help. The Audubon Society. Of all the unlikely people to help, the society for the protection of birds and other wild life came to the rescue. Why? To protect the birds.
Are you drawing a parallel? No one seemed to care that the people of Turkey Creek were suffering and even being exposed to hazardous substances until the bird folks decided to help, via the birds of course.
Evans had this to say in USATODAY, "It's as if people cared more about birds than African Americans--It shouldn't have to be so hard."
However, the people of Turkey Creek are grateful to the Audubon Society, for it may be the only way to save their historic community. If the society can declare the birds there endangered, Turkey Creek can be classified a natural reserve and be preserved--thus preventing greedy developers from bulldozing centuries of rich heritage.
What do you think of birds getting the attention of the plight of Turkey Creek over it's African American residents?
To read more about the people of Turkey Creek, click:http://www.usatoday.com/