Racism

I apologize. This is way too late coming out. I’d tell you I was sick and all that, which I was but who cares? Nobody. I was afraid that if I wrote too quickly, I’d write from anger and say it badly and you wouldn’t like me and you wouldn’t hire me. Well, I waited, and now I’m just angrier. This is my opinion.

Here we are with an overwhelming majority of the country unimpressed with the President for not speaking out against racism fast enough. I’m disappointed too. No, I’m hot.

The President of the United States has a platform to elevate good and stand against bad like, well, like nobody. Trump’s speaks, tweets, or winks, and the world notices. And while I wish he’d been louder earlier, I’m not throwing rocks. He made his decision to wait for what he believed to be good reason and time will tell how that plays out, though it ain’t playing too well for him so far, is it? Still, I respect the office of The President of The United States.

But look at all the outrage. CEOs—there’s a privileged class—are quitting high status boards in protest. I’m not aware of that ever happening. People everywhere are standing up against racism and every form of discrimination. This country hasn’t gotten this wound up to ensure civil rights for everyone since the 1960s.

I wrote my dissertation on racial reconciliation twenty years ago. There’s a copy gathering dust in my school’s library. There’s another one soaking up the a/c at my house. I read original manuscripts from pro-slavery and abolitionist sides, sermons (which still make me sick) lined up against desegregation and the wisdom of white thinkers who risked their lives to speak out against racism, the violent rhetoric of people on both sides from the 1740s through the 1990s. I read a lot, okay?

My point of view on racism is well documented. Racism is a demonic pox on this world that my research shows only love can cure. If you’re a racist, you’re fighting the Creator. You will lose.

Here in the United States of America, we have a terrible history of racist treatment of minority people groups. Hate will neither erase it nor make it better—hate breeds hate. You know that.  

Our history is not only white people oppressing people of color, though that gets most of the ink for good reason. In this world, whenever one people group had the chance they oppressed people of a less powerful group, and the oppressed were almost always a different color. Color makes it easier to know at whom to aim one’s anger, does it not? We still do it—young people with power consistently oppress old people in this country, and your head is in the sand if you don’t see it. Oppression is as human as bad breath.

Despite our past and the reality that the majority had the votes to keep others down, the majority voted to lift people up. White people voted for civil rights. We’ve made progress. The Millennial generation is the least racist generation in our history. We are moving in the right direction, and I’m glad. I also would like us to speed it up a bit.

To do that requires that we, as a united people of the United States, promote common sense and enforce the rule of law. We have laws against race-baiting, inciting riots, and discrimination. Enforce them.

Common sense knows, for instance, that flying the Confederate flag is legal, but stupid. Some people say flying that flag is how they proclaim their Southern heritage. I call bullshit. The Confederate States of America was a different country. It went to war against the United States of America and lost. Time to let that history pass. Japan is a country that also lost a war to the US. Can you imagine people with a Japanese heritage flying The Rising Sun, erecting statues of Hirohito or Gen. Tojo and proclaiming their rights to defy our law against sex-slavery? It may be part of the Japanese heritage, but of course no one does that. They moved on. Run the same scenario with Germany, Vietnam, Iraq, the Soviet Union. The absurdity is common sense.

I do not care if you want to be proud of your Southern heritage. No one can stop you. Be proud of biscuits. Be proud of football teams. Be proud of your literary masters. Be proud of the natural beauty of the South. Be very proud of Southern hospitality—that’s your best export. But how can you be proud of racism or of purposely offending another human being?

I’m a follower of Jesus Christ—admittedly lousy at it much of the time—and people calling themselves Christians while behaving like racists make me want to puke. I’ve heard too much racism out of people who claim to follow Jesus and know the Bible. Are y’all really too stupid to know that Jesus and Mary were Jews? They weren’t Europeans (despite the suggestions of most artworks), they weren’t Africans or Asians—they were Jews. They were Middle Eastern. If you don’t like that, talk to God about it. He will smack you upside your dumb head (I wish) and remind you that he made everybody. Red and yellow, black and white, they are precious in his sight—Jesus loves everybody, and he told you to behave like him. If Christians would just enforce their two laws (love God, love people), the world would like us better (read Acts 2).

A white supremacist group that carries the term “Christian” in its name is a band of lying fools. They are slanderers; run them out! The idea of white or any racial supremacism in the USA of all places is as laughable as someone thinking they’re entitled to be free of hearing opposing ideas. It’s just not us—we’re the ones who advocate equal justice for all. Seriously, what the hell? Why do we tolerate this crap?

As for all y’all who want the statues to come down and all that. While I cannot blame you, I’m not confident it will advance the cause of racial equality, but I am willing to listen to a reasonable argument.

In my opinion, if one resorts to violence and breaking public works, tying up traffic, all that, they are, in effect, stealing other people’s money—taxpayers’ money, specifically. It costs tax money to pay police to stop a riot. It costs tax money for cleanup crews to fix the damage. That’s my money, and it’s not how I want it spent. Debate? YES! Destroy? No.

The violence of the mid-1960s only inflamed unstable people like James Earl Ray. Dr. King was murdered by a wicked man; a criminal inflamed by hate-filled evil. Violence is the currency of racism. Racists want burned buildings, angry mobs, and dead people. Two thousand years ago, the smartest man who ever lived told us that evil comes to steal, kill, and destroy. It’s right in our faces today and we still don’t recognize it? Dumb us.

Look, I’ve been mistreated too. Yes, white people can be held down and kicked by the man, too. I know how hard it is to get back up, ignore the offense, forgive the offender, and move on—all that. If you want to raise hell, and tear stuff up, I really do get it—I have felt that way many times. I’ve read enough to get an inkling on your perspective (my dissertation aimed through the lens of Black Liberation, not white education).

I want to ask, in the most respectful way I know how, is it really so bad here that you start out the day looking for the next offense? Because if you start that way, you’ll find it every time. And if you start your day grateful for all you have, confident of your opportunity to have more, and take civil action to get more, you’ll have it all and so will the rest of us.

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