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June 3, 2008

Racism - The Elephant

There is an elephant sitting in the living rooms, churches, and front seats of the majority of the cars in America. An elephant that is so big that there is no distinguishable space left in the room.

I am guilty of passing up, stepping in, and suffocating on the smell of old elephant dung. I borrow a line from Peter Finch in the movie NETWORK, "I am mad as hell and I am not going to take it anymore." On that note, let us have a conversation and continue it specifically during this presidential election. Let us be brave enough and honest enough to take a stand. Because everything we say we believe is at stake if we don't get this right.

As we get prepared to observe the frenzy leading up to the November election it is imperative that we do the following; Recognize that every fear that anyone has about a black man will be used as a lethal weapon. We must demand that a man's race, a women's gender or an individual's age have nothing to do with the character or qualifications of our presidential nominee. We must demand the highest journalistic standards and ethics from our newspapers and news organizations. Not only must we demand it, we must do what we have not been willing to do which is stop participating in a process that isn't empowering America. We must vote, march, picket, boycott, stand-up, protest, write letters, send e-mails and turn off televisions until the people whose checks we sign start to listen. We must have a dialogue that is inclusive. Racism makes people of all races uncomfortable. The only way for us to ever be comfortable is to take it apart and put it back together, and we must do that together.

I surmise that if the blogs, politicians, media, churches, families and educational institutions engage this country in dialogue about racism now, we will change the trajectory of our country and of the world by November. Our vote will not only put a change agent in office but also restore the principles and liberty our forefathers foresaw.

A discourse about racism is a lofty undertaking but it is vital in annihilating the poisonous talons of hate. Racism consumes us as Americans and leaches across the borders of this nation into other cultures and continents. We are all connected as humans, we are all one.

Let's change the slow, insidious, harmful teachings and feelings of racism. I see no other choice. Not choosing to act would be similar to the flagrant neglect of our beautiful planet - the planet we've been relieving ourselves on for far too long. Future generations will suffer from our incompetence. We have dealt the same way with racism and its effects upon us. We have ducked, dodged, justified, tolerated and allowed racism to define good men and women as "less than". Racism is the word that strangles what is best in us as Americans. Let us have a discourse and let our sun shine through.

Comments and thoughts ... Email PatriciaStatue of Liberty

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