The Royall House and Slave Quarters in Medford will host a talk on “white lies and Black lives.”
An event held on June 9 from 6-7 p.m. will be co-sponsored by the Royall House and Slave Quarters. The panel on Charles Stuart’s story will be part of a series of five monthly programs, hosted by the Massachusetts Historical Society and Northeastern University Law School’s Criminal Justice Task Force.
“Charles Stuart, a white man, murdered his wife and unborn child in Boston in 1989 and falsely blamed the attack on a nonexistent Black man,” reads a statement from the Royall House and Slave Quarters. “Believing Stuart’s lie, the police engaged in a massive manhunt that terrorized a Black community in Mission Hill with detention, public strip-searches, and the arrest of two innocent men. As some lawmakers demanded the death penalty, the media perpetuated this false story. The Stuart case exemplifies how the narrative of white supremacy continues to lead to the dehumanization and devaluation of Black lives. Widespread acceptance of white lies over Black lives persists today.”
Shira Laucharoen is a reporter based in Boston. She currently serves as the assistant director of the Boston Institute for Nonprofit Journalism. In the past she has written for Sampan newspaper, The Somerville Times, Scout Magazine, Boston Magazine, and WBUR.