October 08, 2008

I Cried a Little Yesterday

Maybe I'm just really on edge right now about the whole "financial meltdown" thing or the "I have a doctor appointment next week where I will be yelled at for not exercising."  Maybe I'm just overly emotional because I have not gotten enough sleep lately because Abby is breaking in two more molars.

Or maybe it is because I am really mad.  Genuinely outraged.

I spent many years in The South growing up.  I was friends with everyone.  Actually, the same is true of just about my whole life. I never would have won "most popular" but I knew and was friendly with just about every single person in my school.  I knew everyone just well enough to stay under the radar.  I fit in with the cool kids and could move lunch tables to hang out with the outcasts.  I'm a people pleaser, and have no qualms about that.

I love the South, in general.  But yesterday I remembered why I will not live there again.

I was listening to my favorite afternoon radio show and they were talking about the Presidential race.  Always interesting to hear a different perspective than you get on the mainstream.  (Which is not a knock on the "liberal" media, I happen to think that most of the coverage is balanced.)  A woman called in from North Carolina and told a story about a co-worker that had me so angry that I was fighting back tears when I saw my daughter, hoping beyond hope that she will not have to hear such words in her lifetime.

The story goes...

Co-worker goes to a womans house to provide service, which is believe is of the social-service variety.  While the two women are talking, man-of-the-house comes in.  All involved are white.  He says to social worker "there is no way that you're voting for that n***** Obama.  There is a reason thta it's called the White House."  He then proceeded to get his loaded shotgun and point it in her face while telling her just how bad things would be if a black person were elected to such an office.  Having feared for her life, she called the police.  When they investigated he said it was "just a joke" and nothing was done to him.

I guess that I like to live where I live because, while there is racism, there is tolerance and acceptance.  I work with 100+ churches that are diverse in every sense - conservative and liberal; black, white and Asiain; loud and quiet about their way of doing church; young and old.  But everyone gets along. 

It is my humble prayer that Abby never have to hear a story like this.  I hope that she never has to hear such racial slurs directed to people of any race.  I pray that she never thinks differently of her friends because of their socio-economic status, gender, race.  I hope that she learn to respect people as individuals.  I pray that Anny and I continue to model that behavior for her, and I think that we're on the right path. 

More directly related to this Presidential Race: I pray that we vote based on the issues that are important to us as individuals and as a nation.  I refuse to base my important vote on race, age, gender or political party.  I implore you to do the same.  Vote on all of the issues that are on the top of your list. 

2 comments:

  1. I came across you on Thingamababy. It's unbelievable that people speak that way about Obama. He's a brilliant man, and even joking like that is disgusting (and a bit deranged.) Thanks for posting this... it makes me more motivated to do good in the world.

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  2. The Daily Show and Olbermann show people like this regularly, and it is so disheartening. Did you see the post-debate Daily Show with the elderly Jewish Floridian independent voters focus group? And did you catch the "horse" and "tribe" comments from the woman front and center?

    All this reminds me how sheltered I am, that no one talks like this in front of me . . .

    And also reminds me of why I sleep in the camper (luxurious and air conditioned, to be sure, but a camper just the same) in the driveway in Iowa, when I hate being outside.

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