Editor, The Spotlight:
As someone who will be moving to Slingerlands at the end of April, I write to say how pleased I was to read Marcy Velte’s article about Arlen Westbrook and Margaret Cunningham, the two women who forged in the 1950s the meaningful friendship that helped move the Delmar community further along the long road to inter-racial acceptance.
My daughter, who lives in Slingerlands and knows of my many decades of efforts to reduce the pernicious effects of racism and white privilege, sent me the article and has since bought the book, “Integrating Delmar 1957: The Story of a Friendship.” She will pass it on to me to read in a few weeks.
Westbrook and Cunningham’s friendship and recent book are important steps in a time when, as they say “Race is still an issue.” My own involvement has most recently been in presenting educational programs to my community as part of the Newton Human Rights Commission for the past 15 years since my retirement. Though I missed the April 5th book discussion at the Bethlehem Public Library, I look forward to being a part of your community, and learning more about the work of the Bethlehem Neighbors for Peace. Thank you for this interesting and valuable article.
Susan F. Thomas