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Tulsa's first African American Chief of Police shines new light on Tulsa's history

Posted at 10:37 PM, Jan 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-22 23:38:14-05

TULSA, Okla. — There is a new future for the city of Tulsa on the horizon, as the mayor names the man who will lead the city's police force.

Wendell Franklin is the city's first African American police officer to lead the department. In his first speech, he made a point to talk about change, saying that is his plan for the city.

"That's important, but, to me, I’m brushing that aside. I've got a lot of work that I’ve got to start doing."

The appointment, some say, shines new light on Tulsa’s dark past.

The city is filled with more than 120 years of moments, since its establishment. The unforgettable one is the 1921 attack on Greenwood.

Chief Franklin says, "There's power in history. There's power in knowing what came before you. Some of the things are in the past so we hope not to do those same things in the future."

Many are still fighting to make sure all Tulsans are treated with respect and dignity.

Robert Turner, the Pastor of Vernon AME Church, says, "The fight goes on. Just because we had a black president, doesn't mean the country didn't have racism. Just because we now have a black police chief, doesn't mean the department doesn't have a problem with racism."

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