English: Newt Gingrich at a political conference in Orlando, Florida. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Did you know that twice as many whites as blacks receive food stamps? Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich certainly didn’t know that, or if they did, they weren’t admitting it.
“According to the census Bureau, 28 percent of those receiving food stamps are African-American and 59 percent are white. The big increase in the number of food stamp recipients was due partly to dozens of states that loosened eligibility requirements.”
From The Center Holds, Obama and his Enemies by Jonathan Alter.
Trayvon Martin shooting (Photo credit: ChrisWaldeck)
Most or many people of color are saying that the George Zimmerman acquittal defines the state of racial treatment in the US by police and the judicial system. Not being black myself, I have never experienced what they claim to experience, but I believe that so many with the same complaints must be taken seriously. Even if our system of justice were perfect and the complaints raised were false, we would still need to address the complaints. And I believe them and I believe that those who complain have merit on their side. What shall we do?
I think that the most effective way to change minds is to change perspectives, to walk a mile in the other person’s shoes. Since I am not black and cannot become black, we must find another approach. Perhaps a role-playing game, played in the schools or available electronically for home use might begin to change existing stereotypes. It’s a huge problem to which I don’t have all of the answers. It is mandatory that it be discussed.
The Sean Hannity Show (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
On last night’s show, Hannity had a studio audience exclusively of African-American conservatives. What he did not point out was that the studio audience included almost every African-American conservative in America.
Reportedly, Hannity is paid $4 million per year. That works out to about one penny for every man, woman and child in the country. The penny is largely worthless, but 400 million pennies do make up a substantial sum. Even though the penny is nearly worthless, I would not give one in my name to Hannity. In my opinion, he is not worth it.
Cover of No Future Without Forgiveness
No Future Without Forgiveness by Desmond Mpilo Tutu. He won the Nobel peace prize in 1984 and later chaired the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in South Africa that helped ensure a peaceful death for apartheid and the birth of a democratic South Africa. If forgiving can work in as unlikely a place as South Africa, he contends that it can work anywhere. He suggests that it might be used in the US to improve race relations , and I think that we should try it.
His words, “It may be, for instance, that race relations in the United States will not improve significantly until Native Americans and African Americans get the opportunity to tell their stories and reveal the pain that sits in the pit of their stomachs as a baneful legacy of dispossession and slavery. We saw in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission how the act of telling one’s story has a cathartic, healing effect.”
He may be right. I remember clearly the impact the mini-series Roots had on black and white America.
P. S. If you read this important book, you will be reminded about how tyranny is maintained by means of torture. It also happens to a lesser extent in the US. Please see this article on truthout.org.
Image by secretagent007 via Flickr
Herman Cain sent me a letter requesting campaign contributions and he listed the usual reasons for supporting him. He also listed two reasons to support that are unique to his campaign. He is descended from slaves and Barack is not. He also claims that he is an American, not an African-American. However, the GOP needs him on the ticket because he is Black. In this he implies that he would take the second slot on the ticket if he is not the presidential nominee. I sent him no money.
Please see This Is Herman Cain! | My advice to Herman