My Witness Listening Guide

Episode 4: “On the Job Training, At the Lunch Counter Sit-Ins”

Interviewer: Doneisha Wells  (Maplewood High School)

Interviewee: Frankie Henry (Former Foot Soldier)



1.)  Mrs. Henry talks about not being fully aware of the Movement until Diane Nash “opened up her eyes”. Have you ever experienced an eye-opening moment where you suddenly saw injustice? What did that feel like for you?



2.)  How does our society choose not to recognize injustice? Has that changed over the generations? How can we hold our society accountable to acknowledging the reality of injustice today?



3.)  In Doneisha’s narration piece about Diane Nash, she explains a famous exchange between Nash and Mayor Ben West, in which Nash prompted the mayor to integrate the city’s lunch counters. What do you believe Diane Nash was thinking during this exchange? Would you have been able to initiate this type of conversation with such a public leader?



4.)  Mrs. Henry received “on the job training” during the Nashville Movement. What are the advantages and disadvantages to this approach?  



5.)  Have you ever experienced a moment like Mrs. Henry’s at the lunch counter, where your response had to be the opposite of your instinct? (For example, restraining aggression and staying calm in the face of intense confrontation).



6.)  Mrs. Henry talks about “building on the positive”. Do you see this as an effective strategy when dealing with injustice? What does it look like to build on the positive in your current work position or at school? At what times is this most difficult?