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We Need To Open Our Eyes to Racism, It Continues Even Today

 
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rbroser



Joined: 16 Oct 2007
Posts: 25
Location: Geneseo, NY

PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2007 1:06 am    Post subject: We Need To Open Our Eyes to Racism, It Continues Even Today Reply with quote

I am a white college student, and in one of my classes we are studying African-American history and its impact on today’s society. These photographs clearly show that if the blind hatred toward blacks at that time has just been discovered now, than even today many acts of racial violence are also either ignored or unknown.

As a white person, whose ancestors likely contributed to the discrimination toward blacks that persists to this day, I may never fully understand how African-Americans and their ancestors felt when they were perceived as an inferior race whose lives were considered less precious than those of another race.

However, I see from these photographs, which show murders that happened at a time when many knew already that racism existed, that if you do not act to end racial discrimination, than you are only strengthening it. Even if you disapprove of racism but do not act, to aggressors, your silence only encourages them to hurt more people. When you see these photographs, you must understand that racism will only end when every person stands up and unites to end it.

This collection of photographs describes a time when many refused to take a stand. If we do not want this to continue, than we must all stand up to oppose. It is the actions of the individual that create a chain reaction, but it is the actions of groups of people that create even greater chain reactions.
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yvette



Joined: 03 Nov 2007
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2007 4:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very well said. The key is "unity" among "people". Will there ever be a time when "people" are recognized as being apart of the human race? The hue of our skin should not be an issue, but it is! Truth is, we all cut and bleed in the same way. Last I checked, toilet paper is used by us all, with the exception that some brands are softer than others! Family issues cut to the heart and effect whites the same way that it effects, blacks, latinos, indians, etc... Layoffs, hurricanes, tornadoes, droughts, etc... effect "all". Where did it ever come from that one culture of "people" is more superior than the other? Who started this nonsense? God didn't! Whoever started it has created the biggest mess! So who is going to get the honor of turning this thing around? I am African-American and yes its piercing to my heart to see these pictures or even watch movies to this effect. To see the hurt that was inflicted on people of my culture, hurts me. In the same effect, when I hear the news of a little white baby left by its mother in a trash bin, I feel the same hurt. Or, when I hear the news of a white woman beat or killed by her significant other. I hurt. Why? Because I love and share a kindred to "people". It takes too much energy to "hate". No doubt about it, racism still exist, today. There are so many groups that promote separtism in the name of standing up for social injustice. When is someone going to start a movement that promotes "unity" and how many will dare to be different and join it? There is power in "unity"! When are "people" going to recognize that?
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twinkie1cat



Joined: 16 Oct 2007
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 5:51 am    Post subject: Racism continues even to day. Reply with quote

Racism a lot more than continues today. I think it is getting worse. My joinng this forum started a few weeks ago when I was writing an article for a small paper about Jena 6. I needed to see the lynching pictures to make sure I had some facts straight.

The thing is that the schools today do not teach history. There is so much focus on reading and math that the other core subjects get a short shrift. Then the religious fundamentalists do a lot of work on controlling the content for both science and social studies whle the liberals have problems with the strong role of God in our history. The schools have not caught on to the idea that starting at around 3rd grade you can teach reading [b]through [/b]other subjects. I went to a meeting about Jena 6 a few weeks ago and the young adults there did not think it was particularly important to know the history of civil rights in this country. They mostly knew that Jena 6 was wrong. They went to Jena and had a demonstration and felt good about it, but it did not do a thing and Mychal Bell was locked up again a couple weeks later. There is not the kind of sustained effort that is required to reduce racism. I say "reduce" because you can change behavior but not hearts.

Teachers are a microcosm of society and some, even some inner city teachers, are prejudiced. In special ed we used to be almost exclusively liberal but with the generic and alternate certifications that is no longer the case.

Last year I taught my mentally disabled kids black history on a level they could understand, but the other teachers did not, even when I offered them some good worksheets. I did it as much for the benefit of my student helpers---one black, one latina born in America and for my paraprofessionals, both of whom were too young to remember Dr. King, as for the kids. When I told the kids (high school but with mental abilities of 8 year olds) that before Dr. King their black classmate would have to go to a different school from the rest of them, they asked, Why? Handicapped kids are not generally prejudiced unless someone tells them to be, which happens to regular children at about the 6th grade.

Unity is key, but you don't need to be slurpy about it. There are prejudiced people of all races. A principal once fired me for teaching while white. Jesus said to love unconditionally and that is enough for me. I cannot be a Christian and harbor hate in my heart.

Prejudice is different now than it was in the 1960s. On a personal level it is often gone. There are a lot of interracial couples and children even in the deep south in small towns. In New Orleans dark skinned people are quite rare and the children exceptionally beautiful because they inherited the best of more than one race. A lot of people identify as Creole. ON a community level, however, there is still a whole lot of racial separation. Churches are still almost exclusively one race. If your relgious community is segregated, your community is segregated. There are some schools in this formerly rural, now suburban, parish ( same as a county) where one high school was built to be white----sort of a semi private district to attract middle class white folks from the Catholic and Baptist school. This was only 5 years ago. That kind of fouled up with school choice and the kids from the failing, heavily black school transfering in . Even though this town appears to be about 50/50 all the local officials are still white. I asked my assistant last year whether the mayor was black or white---she was black---and she looked at me like I had asked her to jump off the water tower. (I had never seen a picture of him.) It does not seem to cross the minds of a lot of African Americans in small towns that they can have political power. It is not like Atlanta where they have almost all of it and there is a large black middle class. I think if they knew their history they would know their power. At an institutional level, America is integrated. But it is early integration, not like the race of a person not mattering when it comes to politics. For that reason, Louisiana was embarrased by NO mayor Ray Nagin's "chocolate city" speech after Katrina and the DA there did not realize he would be in serious trouble for firing all his white employees and replacing them with black ones. Owes several million. (He was real blatant about it.). Then of course the judicial system, which is supposed to be colorblind still simply cannot be if a totally out of proportion number of black men are in prison as opposed to white people. If you match for socio-economic and educational issues I doubt black people are any more violent than white ones. Drugs and violence go together and while the black folks were smoking their crack, the white rednecks have been making meth for at least 20 years. It was always a white redneck drug.

So on a personal level things have improved. I have a wonderful hardworking country couple living next to me. They own their home and the guy drives a truck and the girl does nursing work. They are from adjoining towns near Natchez Mississippi and always have a house full of visitors and temporary residents that you never will be able to predict the race of in advance.

On a communty level, it is not there. There is great separatism, not necessarily in neighborhood living but in neighborhood involvement. This is where the work needs to be.

On a state and federal level it is illegal and people work together with folks they would never take home, but the judicial system tells what is really in the hearts of people in power.

Americans are also still shocked when a black person is a Republican and conservative. They don't seem to know that skin color does not make a person open minded. Although I personally find it something of a betrayal of ones roots, the more money a person has the more likely that person is to be conservative. It is almost as shocking as when a gay person is a Republican.

I think that the way that America will lose some of its racism will be when the churches reach out across racial boundaries. I recently found one that has a fair mix and last week, since two board members had resigned, the pastor took the opportunity and appointed two black members to the board. However, this is a small church that caters mostly to a particular sexual orientation even though it is very evangelical. I have seen very little mixing in Louisiana, although the Presbyterian church I attended in NO was making inroads (3 interracial couples although none straight black) and now there are more because the church reached out to the New Orleans community after Katrina both to get rebuilt (flooded sanctuary, organ through floor) and then turned the help outward and organized a lot of community rebuilding, partially by housing the volunteers.

The key here is the kids. Few people are afraid of children and most won't show prejudice against them especially in a faith based situation. They know what is right at least in their heads. That is why the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing was so significant as a turning point in the Civil Rights Movement. You simply do not go around blowing up children. I think a big part of changing America is teaching children history and respect for everyone and preventing prejudice early so that by middle school they don't know anything but acceptance. I don't however, think is was appropriate to teach kindergarteners about lynching. That is a middle school subject. I told my students about "slave stores", words they could understand much more easily than "auction", as places where you could go buy an African-American to work in your house and how they belonged to you the same as your dog does.

College students, when you view the pictures, especially those of the Civil Rights movement; Yes, they are real. The Birmingham pictures were all on the local news. Bull Connor was our police chief. George Wallace was our "gov'na", They called Dr. King a communist (a very bad word in days that were also the Cold War) and his followers "outside agitators" even though Dr. King was living an hour's drive away and Coretta was from a suburb of Birmingham. John Lewis, one of his main assistants, and who organized the freedom rides was from near Auburn Alabama, so most of the demonstrators were local. The hate came from the public officials. Their rhetoric had aroused fear in the white population who were not only afraid of Castro and Krushchev but of everyone who was different from them. I was told as a child that all black people carried knives and the old ladies carried hatpins and they would stab you if you said "the N word" (spoken out) and so to say "colored" so there would be no mistakes as could happen if you said nigra or negro. It was fear manipulated by politicians that became hatred. We were also told that the colored people carried disease and that was why they could not swim in the public pools, go to Kiddieland when the white kids did, or attend our schools. Sex was not discussed in those days.

Study your history young adults. I suggest John Lewis's first book, [i]Walking with the Wind[/i]. There are many newer ones. If you are just starting off, find some children's books. They can get the point across quickly. Unity and equality are not events. They are processess. You go way back into history and have the freedmen. You go throughout the early history of America and know Benjamin Banneker, Sojourner Truth and Harriett Tubman. Later you know Booker T. Washington and George Washington Carver and WEB Dubois. Dr. King did not start the civil rights movement. He was the pinnacle leader ahead of his time and the single greatest spokesperson of the movement. He came at a time when our nation was ready for actual laws against discrimination. We need more leaders in Civil Rights. Sharpton is an attention seeking blowhard. His greatest use is that he knows how to get media attention. Jesse Jackson has moral issues and one speech that he tailors for different occasions. No single leader for the new civil rights movement has risen yet. I hope there is one soon. King's daughter has his speaking gift but also a nice position in a megachurch under a strong pastor . I hope someone rises up soon. America needs it if racism does not continue to rise and consume what is right in this country.

Peace[/b]
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rbroser



Joined: 16 Oct 2007
Posts: 25
Location: Geneseo, NY

PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 6:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you for your words of wisdom. It's true, uniting together is easier said than done, but if we encourage the next generation of kids to think openly and to accept everyone regardless of race or ethnicity, than it can be done.
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twinkie1cat



Joined: 16 Oct 2007
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2007 4:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you. And acceptance of individual differences with the overview that all of us are worthy children of God must occur in the home, the school, and the church. If we say the words AND walk the walk we will make progress. We must protect the freedom of speech of everyone, even those we disagree with (like Westboro Baptist Church---God Hates Fags.com) while we repudiate their ideas. This sets a good example and facilitates understanding and acceptance. It is a theory that is usually used by the religious fundamentalists to repudiate gay people, but it goes the other way too: Love the sinner but hate the sin.

I think it would help a lot if people who love social justice would visit churches that are predominantly or solely of another race. Churches are open. Anyone can visit, although you might be more comfortable with someone who goes there. Then, afterwards you can speak with the pastor just to say hello if it is a large church and maybe send him a note saying honestly what you lilked and did not like about the service. I suggest 2 or 3 visits to the same church in order to be comfortable.

Personally, I have attended a variety of churches, especially during a desolate period when my church closed. I still attend predominantly white churches for some particular reasons. 1. I don't like 3-4 hour services 2. I have problems with churches with all male leadership which many black churches have. (Alot of white churches do too and I also object to that but I found when I came to Louisiana that female pastors are a rare breed here. Mostly they are in United Methodist and Episcopal churches, both too liberal theologically for me.) But I truly love the music in black churches, especially when they sing the old traditional soul gospel with the incredible harmony. I wish predominantly white churches had better music---gospel especially and harmony instead of classical on one end or praise choruses on the other. What is most important to me is a preacher who preaches the Bible and from whom I learn something. That is why congregations need to be mixed and give something that all the members like.

But I really think that is the key, everyone coming together as the family of God and working for common goals. If people of different races can connect through common faith, they can resolve racial problems in other areas.

During slavery times the slaves often went to church with their masters and sat in a special balcony or listened in the windows. However at one church the black people had done the construction on the new church building and those who were free at least contributed to the funding. However, after the building was complete, the white members did not want the the black members to sit on the main floor or come to the altar to pray. So the black folks walked out and the first black denomination, the African Methodist Episcopal Church was born. It is still a strong denomination today.

OH, one last thing. If you want to hear traditional soul gospel with no preaching or fundamentalist bull, WWOZ in New Orleans has Bro. Jesse at 8:30 AM on Sundays. It is streamed on the internet. And that is followed by Hazel the Delta Rambler, whose first set is always Bluegrass Gospel. Sometimes you get different interpretations of the same songs. 8:30-10AM Central, WWOZ. Occasionally Bro Jesse gets pre-empted or has a sub who plays more contempory stuff, but he is usually there.
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rbroser



Joined: 16 Oct 2007
Posts: 25
Location: Geneseo, NY

PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2007 6:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Although I do not attend church (I am Jewish), I do enjoy gospel music, and I'll keep an eye on the internet for WWOZ. Thanks!
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yvette



Joined: 03 Nov 2007
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Mon Nov 05, 2007 6:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

"Unity is key, but you don't need to be slurpy about it".

Hmm..Appearance is that this is a form of prejudice as well when we don't respect the opinions or feelings of others of which they are entitled to. I will now add to "unity" that "respect" is also key considering we are all different and don't think or express ourselves the same. This too is the same across all cultures.
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twinkie1cat



Joined: 16 Oct 2007
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2007 6:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I did not mean that you were being slurpy, but that I have seen prejudice both against people of other races and experienced it myself. I have also seen a great deal of socio-economic and disability prejudice among all races. Hate lives in the heart, not the skin. I taught in a literally almost all black school system for 10 years. When I started the students were 98% minority (two elementaries were predominantly Vietnamese and Hispanic but the rest were African-American) and the teachers were 90% minority. For the first 5 years I saw one other white teacher---the art teacher who came in twice a week and 1 white student, a child in the primary moderately retarded class. When I went to a high school there was one other white teacher---and he was Jewish--- and 3 white students, one special ed and two regular. The surrounding systems were always trying to get the Atlanta system to merge with them because they were constantly in trouble with the feds for not having enough minority teachers.

What I mean by slurpy is when minorities are considered totally innocent and progressives think they should not be held responsible when they act in a prejudiced way. Certainly there is white privilege, but in areas where there is a large black middle class there is also black privilege. Consider that the former Mayor of Atlanta, Bill Campbell is now in the Federal Pen for corruption in office. When he was mayor, businesses could not get a contract with the City of Atlanta without being black owned and bribing him. IN 2000 the voters cleaned house and elected a black woman as Mayor (Shirley Franklin) and a lesbian City Council President (Karla Drenner) to deal with the corruption. Shirley promptly fired the police chief, Beverly Harvard, who was a Campbell appointee and not effective at all and was instrumental in the Fulton County Sheriff, an elected official, leaving office. Both were black women. The President, whose office has a lot of power in Atlanta later became the first openly gay state representative.

Consider also, Eddie Jordan, the DA of New Orleans who just resigned under pressure. He fired all his white staff when he came into office and replaced them with African Americans. Some of them were office staff who had worked there for 15 years. Now the city and possibly the citizens of Louisiana are going to have to pay off the damages and the office is in a wreck. That was prejudice too.

I was fired for teaching while white. The principal said to my face. "You don't care about the children. White people never really care." She pushed the only other white teacher, a disabled marine, to resign. The man was first year and giving his all. Even teaching martial arts in the after school program despite being in pain from being shot up AND including a little boy with cerebral palsy in his class. She made the man cry. She told him she better not catch him talking to me and plotting! I hardly knew, rarely spoke with him because he was regular education and I had been consigned to the basement. There was one other white teacher she could not get rid of because he had been there since the school opened and was really a minority since he was Jewish, so she did nto harrass him. I was replaced by a long term supply teacher who almost killed one of the kids because they could not find a real teacher for that multihandicapped class. I am often judged by my appearance and the color of my skin as a conservative by both black and white people. It can come in handy when I want to know what white people think---before they know me and that I had two black husbands and raised a black child. It is so funny when the calls me "Mama" in Walmart.

Prior to the Civil Rights Movement AFrican Americans were considered child like and less intelligent than whites. Even liberals thought this, but instead of Jim Crowing them back towards slavery, the liberals thought they should be taken care of and looked after. That is slurpy, too. I think I would rather be hated than patronized.

So I have seen how prejudice and racism can come from all directions. No one should be considered godly based on the color of his or her skin. ONe of the the problems that fallen sinners have is not seeing our brothers and sisters as God does.
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rbroser



Joined: 16 Oct 2007
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Location: Geneseo, NY

PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2007 12:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I see. It seems that you accept all people as God's children, but still you have been the victim of racial prejudice, too (as you are white, many assume that you are apathetic toward those of different and ethnicities and cannot properly teach them).

However, although minorities have prejudices, too, they have them for a reason. As I am white, my ancestors probably were the ones who created racial discrimination (through white supremacy) toward blacks (and later other racial minorities) and have allowed them to continue for many years. I understand that whites can also be victims of racial discrimination, but that is because of lack of trust between whites and minorities (who for many years were politically and social handicapped in a white-dominant society).

Still, you bring up an interesting point: It is not enough to preach for racial equality, as many "progressives" who advocate it still do not believe that their reluctance to participate in the social matter hindered the progress of ending racism and prejudice. Through education and developing relations between whites, blacks, and other minorities, we can accomplish two things:

First, we can show how horrible racism is, and that it must be stopped immediately.

And secondly, relationships between those of different racial backgrounds will break the "color line" (the distancing of interactions between whites and racial minorities as a result of racism promoting separate "spheres of society") and help convince everyone that everyone else is just like themselves: A human being.

I hope that people will see from your experiences that every person can be victims of racism (due to the disastrous consequences of slavery and racism discrimination that create both white and black stereotypes), and learn to forgive and forget. Easier said than done, but it CAN be done if we all work together.
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twinkie1cat



Joined: 16 Oct 2007
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2007 3:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, I agree with your means of combatting racism. With you being Jewish your people have always experienced racism from the time of Moses until today. It has been some really nasty stuff and around Easter still comes up when fundamentalists say that the Jews killed Jesus. They did not. The Romans tried to execute him, but he gave up his own life and could have been rescued by angels at any time. Then he did not stay dead.

I think white people are racist probably often out of fear which they were taught because politicians told them too. White children tend to be taught to obey authority no mater what. (Remember the teenager who was sexually abused in McDonalds because she had been told to obey all adults? Therefore, she disrobed and submitted to the abuse because an adult told her to.)

When the officials and preachers told white people that black leaders wanted to take over the world and enslave white people, they believed them. They were authority figures. The Civil rights movement also came during the Cold War when the communist threat was on everyone's mind.

It was only a few years before that a horrible movie came out. I cannot think of the name of it and it portrayed black men as wanting to have sex with white women and frightened a lot of people. It glorified the KKK. It was a silent movie in a time when movies were the main form of entertainment outside the home.

Of course the prevailing thinking of the earlier time was that the slave traders were doing Africans a favor by removing them from their primitive life in Africa and that they were better off here, even as slaves.

I think that fighting racism requires two things. The first is that we must ensure that institutional racism is combatted publically and the perpetrators punished. It must also occur in the hearts and minds of individuals on both sides through interpersonal relationships. There is also a third way and that is through the schools ensuring equal opportunity for all students. Equal opportunity includes leveling the playing field by giving extra to disadvantaged children swo they have some similarilty of experience to advantaged ones. That means small classes, highly qualified teachers, good technology and lots of field trips. Try explaining a ravine to a child who has never seen a hill. I did.

I am not organized tonight so I wil close.

Peace, Rhonda
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rbroser



Joined: 16 Oct 2007
Posts: 25
Location: Geneseo, NY

PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2007 5:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I believe the movie you are referring to is Birth Of a Nation. It was a silent movie that glorified the KKK and stereotyped blacks as either docile, obedient people who "loved" their white masters, rampant and savage rapists (directed at black men), or sexually active women who "wanted" to seduce theirs masters instead of avoid being raped by them.

This movie shows many fears that whites held against blacks that made it more difficult to accept them as their equals: miscegenation, paternalism (believing it was the duty of whites to over assistance to "less fortunate", "inferior" black), and black violence.

Let us not be manipulated by these fears anymore. We are all human beings, and to not accept that is both a sign of ignorance and reluctance to have a "color-blind" world.
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twinkie1cat



Joined: 16 Oct 2007
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2007 5:16 pm    Post subject: Racism Reply with quote

But you know there are a lot of people who don't want to be colorblind. It seems a lot of black people want a kind of equal separatism---like schools that are just for black boys. This kind of thing really bothers me because one of the premises of the civil rights movement was that separate was not equal. It reminds me of the Simpsons episode where they taught the girls in a separate setting that supposedly was geared to the girls' learning style but which taught them no math. Lisa got into drag and went to the boys' school.

It is not something I know a lot about but I think that was also the debate between Booker T. Washington and WEB Dubois. And before the civil rights movement, in places like Atlanta where there was already a strong black middle class, there was a whole separate society that was just as genteel as white society but was African American. In fact, I believe it was Alonzo Herndon who made his fortune off of having an all white barber shop in which black barbers made great money catering to the customers. Then he poured the money back into the black community. Great house too! I saw it----but oddly victorian with no black cultural influence like you see today.

I would love the world to be colorblind and have worked toward that on a low level when I helped integrate a couple of churches. It surprised the pastor of a rural baptist church in Louisiana when I started bringing mine 10 year old friend. Then she wanted to join and did. The pastor was surprised that there was no comments or objections from the membership. Of course the fact that she was a little child was probably key. And I really think that that is the key to colorblindness---reaching out with the children---not as recipients of aid but as part of the family. One thing I have never seen is a black civic organization reaching out to a poor, predominantly white community. It goes the other way all the time, but if it can go that way sometimes I think it would be progress.

There is so much talk about race now though. There is a whole lot of fretting about black boys being "overrepresented" in special education and I think it keeps some from getting the help they need. I don't think there is any difference in black and white boys' learning style if they have similar backgrounds and experiences. Advantaged black students do just as well as advantaged white students and disadvantaged ones the same. There are certain diseases and syndrome that are more common in one race than the other and some can cause retardation, notably sickle cell disease if the child has a stroke from it which many do and which also can cause excessive absences.

I think one good way to attack racism is to emphasize the effects of poverty on children. There are actually more poor white children than poor black children, but the impression is that there are more black children. I think the upcoming federal administration will have the ability to look more into doing something about poverty. I just hope they do it right and make it permanent. However, on a state level it looks like the conservatives are taking charge more and more and there will have to be federal oversight, which is not popular. Plus the Bush administration has done a good bit of damage with the judicial appointments and I don't think we will see a return of the Supreme Court to the will of the people. I wish there was a minimum age of 65 for appointment to the Supreme to ensure that these lifetime appointees did not last for 30 years.

Yes, Birth of a Nation was the movie I was talking about. I think in addition to the fears that people had, there was an immense attraction to the media which was so new. I am sure it was so real to the people at the time that they were sure it was true---like rumors that go out on the Internet now and the instant news that we have. (It is just like people think that Katrina survivors are poor and black, because that is what we saw at the Superdome. But Katrina was an equal opportunity hurricane. New Orleans was only about 60% black and St. Bernard was hit even harder. There was NO habitable housing. They still don't have their government building and the area was frankly working class. There were only a few rich people in Chalmette and a lot of small business owners. I think the reason St. Bernard is recovering is that many people worked in the skilled trades and construction industry so they fixed their own houses, which they owned. There were not a lot of renters. They were not fancy houses, either. For the most part, most were quite ordinary tract homes, many built in the 1950s and some built, like my trailer neighbor in Vidalia, by the hands of the owners. All were in that flat Louisiana style---no basements, built on slabs. Only one neighborhood had expensive homes $250-500,000. I had a rental, a great 4 bedroom for $650 a month built in the 1950s appraised at $90,000. St Bernard was 85% white!
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rbroser



Joined: 16 Oct 2007
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2007 10:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very true. By emphasizing the effects of poverty on children (not solely black or white), we can bring attention to this national problem.

Also, although financial aid would the most obvious method to battle poverty, I believe education is just as important. Those who are in poverty suffer from a lack of money because they lack the education and experience to obtain better-paying jobs. Financial aid (through either Medicare or Medicaid) gives money to those in need, but that solves the problem only temporarily.

That money will eventually run out, and giving regular monetary benefits would only burden the government budget (social entitlements - Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security - compose the largest portion of the Federal Budget).

Education will help battle poverty (and with it, racism) by not only emphasizing the importance of equality (and for a world that promotes interracial relationships and not racial separatism), but by also allowing children to acquire better jobs, earn more money (which would "break" the poverty cycle), and this would (if we all worked together to make this happen) bring a permanent end to poverty.

Hopefully, that next generation will be able to acquire good homes, and, most importantly, educate others to reform our society for the better. Although there are always opportunities to work toward a world without poverty and racial discrimination, we cannot delay our efforts any longer.

As Charles Chesnutt, a storyteller from North Carolina said to "close his own story of white supremacy, racial murder, and unresolved injustice" (This is an excerpt from Tim Tyson's "Blood Done Sign My Name"):

"There's time enough, but none to spare".

In hopes of a better tomorrow for the kids of tomorrow,

Ryan
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