Friday, February 28, 2014
Palm Springs Black History Month Parade
Downtown Palm Springs has more parades than any place I have ever been...
...and last Saturday was the occasion for the 27th Annual Black History Month Parade.
The Palm Springs High School band contingent led off the parade and was followed by a clutch of white politicians in convertibles, including gay Palm Springs Mayor Steve Pougnet above...
...but they were all upstaged by the fabulous dance studio founder above.
Like many other places in the United States, Palm Springs has an ugly racial history that includes razing and burning down a poor downtown neighborhood called Section 14 in 1962. (Click here for a fascinating history of blacks in the Coachella Valley written by Chris Clarke in 2012.)
Though Palm Springs seems to be successfully integrated these days, the racial antagonisms and wounds are still present, as this 2001 LA Times article about a wild racial vandalism incident at Palm Springs High School attests.
Maybe the advent of a new, less bigoted Calfornia generation will help...
...and we can all aspire to being Ambitious Bad Girls.