Letter to Rachel Godsil’s Borough Representative in Brooklyn
Dear Mr. Yassky,
I have just returned from a magical visit to wondrous Brooklyn, where all of God’s children are learning how to work, live, and play together, in ways that are inspiring visions of great
“nation building possibilities” over the next few generations.
About 10 years ago I had great anxieties about my daughter Rachel Godsil and her husband Jim Freeman choosing Brooklyn as the place to raise their family. Today I understand that my grand daughters Kate and Rebecca are deeply privileged to be children of a New Brooklyn.
Over the years, I hope to lend a hand to a movement for “public art of reconciliation” in Brooklyn.
This past year Cleo Pruitt has forged a Milwaukee Alliance spearheaded by the NAACP and the National Association of Black Veterans(NABVETS) called “A Rebirth of Freedom.” This project will see a marvelous sculpture in honor of African American Veterans at Milwaukee’s National Soliders Home Grounds this July, 2006. This and projects like it are low budget public/private collaborations with immense “return” potential, economically, culturally, and politically.
I hope to find partners across the land with deep affinities for Brooklyn to focus on the exterior of the Brooklyn Musum.
Exterior of Brooklyn Museum for Naion Building in a New Brooklyn
Do you think it insane for me to be disappointed that there are no new statues or names carved in the grand exterior to the Brooklyn Public Museum reflecting the contribution of people of color to the evolutionary drama?
I and millions of other Americans will likely have “mixed” grandchildren someday not that far off. I would like them to see some names or statues on the museum’s exterior reflecting the beauty and the glory of their ancestors of color, from Africa, Asia, Latin America, everywhere.
We will all be better off, methinks, if the future “belongs” to “mixed” Americans. Or at least large chunks of it. Primordial localisms appear to challenge evolution and “the good society” these days.
With the internet I have a very long reach when my causes are in the grain of history, congruent with broader movements awaiting a small push.
Please let me know if you think this vision makes sense to you and yours.
If it does, well then, I am happy to serve as a spark for a movement to give the exterior of the Brooklyn Museum some new names and personalities. I think in about 5 years we could at least get some new names carved in appropriate spots.
We could also have a conversation about ways of inspiring a “Public Art for Reconciliation” movement across our great nation.
Art that illuminates.
Art that brings the world to our neighborhoods.
Milwaukee, which tends to see itself as “the most segregated city of the USA, might even donate the stone masons’ labor. That would be good for our collective soul.