Racism in this country has been a big topic of conversation since the first ships arrived here over 200 years ago. A dislike, fear, or just plain hatred for someone different is so deeply ingrained in our countries history that it's a little surprising the Statue of Liberty's tablet doesn't bear mention of lynch mobs. That may sound a little over the top but lets be honest....our country does have a less than sparkling record on this issue.
From the very beginning we forced the indigent people off of their lands, enslaved thousands of others and pretty much built a dark legacy of treating anyone that was different as either property or otherwise not worthy to share the same space as us.
Now I could spend countless days stirring the coals of this abysmal fire, maybe I would even convince myself that by doing so it would be somehow cathartic, but I won't. Mainly because, other than from a standpoint of not forgetting where you came from, it's not cathartic.
In fact, I personally believe that what I have seen over the last few years is an effort by many to keep anger and division alive and well by fanning the flames.
So...not being a person to keep my opinions to myself, just ask my wife, I felt that it was time for me to weigh in on this heated subject.
First of all, for full disclosure, I am white. Jewish/German to be exact but I just recently discovered that and it's not really the point anyway. I just felt it was fair to point out that my skin color has never caused me to be denied much of anything. I can't say that it has opened doors for me either but that may have more to do with my abrasive personality than race.
When I have had this discussion in the past I have found some that will demonize me and say that because I am white I should just keep my mouth shut (lol like that's gonna happen, once again just ask my wife). I find this type of a response to be very offensive and well racist. I am an American (regardless of color) and should be able to discuss anything I please. That is after all one of the perks of being American isn't it?
Now before I cross some ambiguous sensitivity line and end up with Al Sharpton holding a protest on my front lawn, I think that maybe I should just get to the actual point here.
I know that there are still many fellow Americans who actually have witnessed brutal racism in this country. I have see the documentaries on the Freedom Riders. I have read books on the Japanese Internment camps. So I do understand that there is still a fair amount of older Americans to whom racism hits very close to home. My intention is to neither downplay nor whitewash (seriously no pun intended) these grievous parts of our countries history.
What I also know is that I have watched two generations of children now grow up with little or no true understanding of what racism really is. Not to say that they don't understand the word or may not have experienced this to some degree, but I think it's fair to say that with few exceptions the youth of America is living in a vastly different country.
And my point really is that if the children of this country are smart enough to realize that the color of a persons skin is a silly reason to like or dislike a someone than why can't the media, politicians, adults....ect...?
Racism is a fire that will die out if you let it. I firmly believe that. Yes, there will always be idiots who judge others by the color of their skin...or their gender...or their shoe size...or whatever. We call these people idiots and we stop listening to them.
I see people like Al Sharpton who makes a decent living by throwing more logs on the fire. He does this under the guise that he is somehow a spokesman for Black America? How dishonest is that when hundreds of black youths have their lives taken each year but you only see him crawl out of his office if it's a high profile case with a suspect that is other than black? Simple....there's no money in actually fighting racism but a boatload can be made if you continue to stir the fire.
Not to single Mr Sharpton out, but he is an easily recognizable figure and makes the point. There are people of every color that I can make the same accusations of but it wouldn't have the umph as many may not know who they are. In a way this also illustrates my point of how things have changed over the last 50 years. I use an affluent, powerful black man to make my point because the white examples just really aren't successful enough to mention.
There has been so much emphasis placed on race in the news lately. Zimmerman shooting an unarmed Martin - The WWII Vet that was beaten to death - The Australian baseball player that was shot by bored kids and the list goes on.
As horrible as these events are there are those who want you to believe that these are the actions of an entire race. That everyone who is white want's to stalk and kill black kids. That black youth are out to mercilessly beat old people ect...
At least that is the perception I get when watching the media debate over these horrible crimes.
So what do the actions of one or even a few idiots have to do with the rest of our wonderful civilization? Well I'll tell you, and it doesn't matter whom the victim or the perpetrator is....the actions of idiots hurt all of us civilized Americans that are trying to live our lives and raise our families.
Their color is not an issue.....what they have tweeted is not an issue....the only issue is that the animals should be treated like animals and the rest of us should be smart enough not to fall for the race tricks that ultimately just lead to more anger and misdeeds.
It's not our diversity that keeps us strong...it's our unity. The good vs The bad (period)