Saturday, October 8, 2016

Journal 5 by Betsy Lyons

Part 1 - The first profile that I do not want to forget is Moreese Bickham. One of the first profiles that we read about the prisoner who was put on death row. Bickham was in prison for over thirty years for murdering two white deputies. I always thought it was interesting how he was put on death row but he was never executed. I found this story interesting because he had his faith to hold onto. He never lost hope even though he was sent to death. This story is powering to me because when he could have easily given up when he was trying to get his sentence shortened but he kept getting denied. That would frustrate me because many people had come and gone, and come and gone again while he was in there. Bickham did not get mad or lose faith that his time would come. God was with him all throughout his time there and spared his life. Even in the darkest times he had hope that he was going to make it out alive.

The second profile that I do not want to forget is Dewey Chafin and his mother, Barbara Elkins. This profile talks about the serpent handlers. This story was interesting to say the least. Chafin and his mother were eccentric people and were apart of a community that serpent handling was the norm. Even when one of the founders died from a rattlesnake bite, Chafin and his mother continued to do what they were doing. Chafin had so much faith and he says that, "If God wants me to live, I'll live." Chafin believed to be following God by taking the Bible literal. This profile is interesting because most people do not do that nowadays, let alone have such great faith. Serpent handlers faced persecution. He kept believing and being a serpent handler when their churches were vandalized, or their snakes stole or killed as pranks. Many people ridiculed them and their actions of serpent handling. But that did not stop Dewey Chafin and all the followers.

Part 2 - My favorite photo in the book is of The Rev. Lavada Durst, a.k.a. Dr. Hepcat. This photo is my favorite because he is smiling. He was the first African-American disc jokey in the state. He became this during the 1930s which was before African-Americans and whites were equal yet. But yet he's smiling. His smile makes me smile. This photo shows to me that Dr. Hepcat is so proud of who he is and who he became. He is holding up his work called The Jives of Dr. Hepcat. Isay and Wang took this picture with Dr. Hepcat on the front porch which makes me sense a feeling of home and comfort. The sun is shining and this photo just shows that it was a nicer day. Of all though, his smile is my favorite because he just looks so happy. Some of the other pictures have people that are not even smiling and they are just straight faced. I like looking and reading about people who have joy and are enthusiastic about what is to come.

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