Tuesday, February 17, 2015


Over the past weekend I had the good fortune to go see the movie, "Selma." After seeing the movie I too find it outrageous that it did not get one Academy Award nomination. But that is not the intent of this post. I am certainly old enough to remember the events of the 1960s. Nevertheless I cringed as I watched with horror the events that are portrayed. I found myself crying and I intuitively knew that my tears were coming from a very deep place that went beyond what I was seeing.

There is no doubt in my mind that if the situation was reversed and the majority of the population were people of color who were treating a minority white population in a similar fashion the subsequent events would have been quite different. It is my belief that in this hypothetical situation the United States would view the threat of ISIS as a very low priority. It is my belief that in such a situation the white people of America would have armed themselves with Uzis and they would be out indiscriminately killing as many black people as they could. I find the fact that this has not happened within the minority community with the reality of America to be astounding.

As I now watch the efforts to once again disenfranchise the minority communities under the guise of preventing voter fraud I am quite nauseous. So many politicians like to refer to America as the greatest country in the world. It really would be so lovely if one day this was true.

1 comment:

  1. While I agree 100% with your sentiment I don't agree with the particular framing. You've framed this, and correct me if I am misconstruing your statements, as white people against {insert minority label here} people. In the last decade or so my views have changed from sharing this opinion to narrowing the focus a bit more. I no longer believe it can be trivialized to such a broad statement, I don't believe there is a white vs. x mentality, rather I believe there is a {insert religion here} against x mentality.

    I would argue that this has possibly always been the case but media and society at large has been remiss in defining it as such. We have seen since the history of religion an innate intolerance against all things unknown. We have a evolutionary biological imperative to fear the unknown and religion has and always will stoke that fire within us. In the 19th century we saw the pulpit justifying past slavery through their perverse translation of their chosen religious text which lasted until the civil rights era. We know Hitler justified the extermination of the Jews through religious context and had the backing of a non trivial number of Catholic cardinals.

    We look at law enforcement today. We know from psychological profiles of police around the world that they are prone to religiosity. Anecdotally we often hear police leadership providing religious reference and citing interference from a higher power(aka miracles). There are studies that have shown that due to the stress police are placed under they often throw themselves into their belief structure as a coping mechanism thus elevating their level of religiosity. A negative feedback loop if you will.

    We see this playing out today with the LGBT+ community. Christians, not just white, are losing their collective minds because two people of the same gender loving one another is an abomination to them. They are obstructing the path for these people to share in the same rights you and I have simply because their religion tells them it is wrong. They don't care about all of the conflicting verbiage in the Bible that can be read either way, their church tells them it is wrong so it must be.

    We know that there is a correlation between religiosity and racist notions as this has been identified in more than one study. I think it is time we as a society call a spade a spade. Believing in a deity of some kind does not have to be intrinsically combined with a dogma. Subscribing to a dogma serves only to limit the capacity to find middle ground. Religion has regularly served as the spark that lit the powder keg in the most horrific of wars/crimes/etc that human kind has subjected themselves to. Why must one tie believing in a deity with subscribing to a certain set of rules as dictated by another human being who has non verifiable communications with said deity? If they were saying they were speaking to anyone else we'd consider them mentally ill.

    We need to shed ourselves of religion not necessarily of faith. It has been a precursor for death and atrocity since its inception. While I believe from a historical standpoint it has served its purpose in science, human welfare, etc. it has overwhelmingly done more harm than good. In today's society it is most certainly detrimental.