The Truth from the Sidelines
The Black Codes from a black citizen
Reporter: How would you describe the Black codes?
Tom: The Black codes try and keep me from voting, owning land and being able to make a good living for me and my family.
Reporter: How do you earn your living now?
Tom: I am a sharecropper but I always to owe the landowner more each year. So I cannot make enough money to take care of my family and buy my own land. We are always poor and hungry.
Reporter: What other Black codes have affected you beside not being able to vote or own land?
Tom: Well, I was once arrested because I did not have a job yet. I finished a job on Friday and was going to start a new job on Monday digging ditches along the roads. The Black codes say that if you are asked about your job and you do not have a job, they will lock you up in the jail. I had just turned 18 years old and so I went to jail for a year.
Reporter: Wow, that was not a good birthday gift. I am glad that you have a family and wish you will in the future.
Keeping the Black codes
It your duty to report any black men or women not obeying these Codes to the police right away.