To Me

Glad to have another one. Today is my 79th birthday. Four years ago, I was in ICU unable to move my left side. The first rule to remember in the ICU—you have no privacy.

The night of my 75th birthday, I needed a catheter. As the doctor performed his job, I lay naked in front of four female nurses. I said to one of them, “this is not how I planned to celebrate my 75th birthday.”

I am delighted to have another birthday. With my stroke experience and Jeny’s chemotherapy problems, we both value each day. Our needs are met, our wants have diminished, we have a stronger interest in seeing to the needs of others.

Our joy is in our faith, our family, our friends, not our possessions or power. Thank you, family and friends for all you do for us.

My CRT Education Continues. A recent headline read: “So you don’t like critical race theory (CRT). What is it?” As my readers know, I have been trying to educate myself about CRT. I was eager to read the article hoping to learn more. I got a good start.

Reuben Navarette, a Mexican American, spent much of the article reporting the right-wing portrayal of CRT is incorrect. He states, “it is not a way for people of color to settle the score by portraying white people as racist villains who are privileged and fragile.”

He interviewed Randal Kennedy, Harvard Law Professor and leading African-american scholar, who taught Race, Racism and American Law. Professor Kennedy said CRT has two central ideas: First, race and racism are central to American life, and second, the liberal attempt at anti-discrimination law was insufficient to create a just America.

I am not sure the modern translation from his assumption to action as practiced by those in favor of CRT is as simple as he makes it appear. I need to find out more. His words are a good starting point for my education.

With regards to his first assumption. I struggle with the term central. I certainly believe prejudice to be central in American life for people of color. I believe prejudice is important — even very important — for all American life. I am not sure it is foremost for all of American life. Having said that, I am not sure what is the foremost factor to American life. I will need to think about that concept.

Also, I still prefer speaking of prejudice based on color over the terms race and racism, although I understand my view is not the dominant paradigm.

The second assumption is that anti-discrimination laws have failed. I agree, but I believe the law will always fail. To overcome prejudice requires adjustments of the heart and mind. Legislation has benefits and we need to keep trying, but any meaningful long-term solution has to come from sources that change the heart and mind.

The article concludes by saying “the war over Critical Race Theory began in the late 1970s when the late Harvard Law School Professor Derrick Bell and other legal scholars concluded that the way to fix America was not to be color blind but to be color conscious.  Only then can we have an honest conversation about race.”

If by color conscious they mean education about prejudice based on color in history and in today’s world then I agree. We need to acknowledge prejudice based on color has occurred in history and still occurs today. I believe we should teach events that demonstrate the extent of that prejudice.

However, I also believe we need to be color conscious in SOME situations AND do our best to be color blind in others. For example, being color conscious about the person to whom you sell your house is not a good thing and being color-blind about the sale of your house is a good thing.

His hope for an honest conversation will never occur until both sides agree to listen, a hard task in today’s environment.

In this time of thanksgiving is there any good news?  I found many stories of hope this week. Here are but a few:

A man in Iowa had two strokes and a heart attack this year and was too weak to put up his many lights and decorations he normally displays. In the past he put out bins for people to donate food and money as they drove or walked by his display. The items were for the local food bank. He has raised thousands of dollars in the past.

This year a stranger heard about the problem and with his friends put up the display.

https://www.sunnyskyz.com/good-news/4483/Stranger-Keeps-Iowa-Man-039-s-Christmas-Lights-Tradition-Going

This is a wonderful story of friendship involving a Down Syndrome person.

Act of Kindness Sparks Friendship Between Whole Foods Employee And Boy With Special Needs (sunnyskyz.com)

And yet another heartwarming story of an unlikely friendship.

Wrong Number Leads To 20-Year Friendship Between Florida Woman And Rhode Island Man (sunnyskyz.com)

Here is a great idea for any community. These people are serving the basic needs of others in a big way. Hard to believe the amount that would have been wasted.

Pittsburgh Woman’s Food Rescue App Diverts 20 Million Pounds of Surplus into 17mil Meals For Those in Need (goodnewsnetwork.org)

“We must learn to live together as brothers (and sisters) or we will surely die together as fools.” Martin Luthur King Jr.

Peace

 Jerry


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