An important fact
I hope not to be misunderstood if I point out this important fact: One of the co-founders of Black Lives Matter, Patrisse Cullors, gave an interview in 2015 in which she said, ““We do have an ideological frame. Myself and Alicia (Garza, another co-founder), in particular, are trained organizers; we are trained Marxists. We are superversed on, sort of, ideological theories. And I think what we really try to do is build a movement that could be utilized by many, many Black folks.”
I realize that some conservatives think anyone left of George Will is a Marxist. But in this instance the concern may be legitimate. The goals listed on the organization’s website are clearly socialist — how do we know that its founders don’t intend, ultimately, to harm our country?
Racism is real and it’s extensive. But both the Salem Witch Trials and the Red Scare came about because some people took what they thought was a legitimate concern and took it too far, pointing fingers until practically everyone was under suspicion.
American society may be flawed, but its purpose has not been to promote white supremacy — its purpose has been to promote freedom and opportunity for all. Not every white person is a racist.
It’s important to confront racism. But we’re going to be in trouble if every waking moment is consumed with searching out the latest example. Black Lives Matter must temper its protests with appreciation for the benefits of living in a free country.
Let’s elect Dan Besse to the critical N.C. House District 74 seat in the fall.
I first learned of Dan Besse back in 1973 when he was a hall-mate of my best friend in Old East dormitory at UNC-Chapel Hill. Dan was a staunch hard-working advocate and team builder for people from the start, serving in many important roles while earning his UNC-CH bachelor’s and law degrees.
Then for a decade, Dan was a legal aid attorney for poor families. Dan has been a public interest attorney, an educator (teaching at NCSU, WSSU, Forsyth Tech) and public servant up to this day.
Dan’s top priorities have consistently been education, employment, health care, the environment and service. Since 2001, Dan has been an extremely hard-working Winston-Salem city councilman, with seminal and deep work in transportation, community development, housing, efficiency and equity. Demonstrating the trust and respect held for him, both Democratic and Republican N.C. governors alike have appointed Dan to important multi-year commissions, including those on emergency response, the environment and coastal resources.
Dan is also an extremely authentic, caring, respectful and inclusive man. He is always extremely well prepared and dedicated toward doing the right thing. For example, he monitors Winston-Salem’s expenditures to see where cuts can be made to lower property taxes.
An extremely qualified and complementary candidate to Dan is Terri LeGrand, who is running for the N.C. Senate District 31 seat.
I’ve been thinking about President Trump and imagining what it would be like to have him as my financial adviser or my weatherman or my coach (and who do I think would get blamed if we lost a game or match?) or my doctor (I dread to think about that) or my minister with the Bible held at his arm’s length (and never opened and read or believed in) or my teacher with his unsmiling face and constant bragging about how to get ahead in the world by mocking people and telling me by example how easy it is to lie and never to believe I’ve ever made a mistake and apologize. Well, I don’t want that kind of guidance, and that’s why I doubt him and resent him.
I have to admit, however, that he is an expert as a puppeteer whenever he puts Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on one knee and Attorney General William Barr on the other to threaten them and their feckless cohorts in the Cabinet and Congress into doing his hurtful, dictatorial and harmful deeds.
The Rev. Bill Gramley
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