Tuesday, June 23, 2015

In the aftermath of the Charleston, SC massacre

Way Past Mourning
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By Dr Ada M Fisher
In the second verse of The Negro National Anthem written by Black Republican James Weldon Johnson it states .                                                                                                                                        “Have not our weary feet, Come to the place for which our fathers sighed?  We have come over a way that with tears has been watered, We have come, treading our path through the blood of the slaughtered, Out from the gloomy past,  Till now we stand at last , , ,” Let us ask ourselves how much in terms of attitudes has really changed for black Americans minus the chains?   Appreciate that what is needed is not a conversation about race but a change of heart with the doors of opportunity truly flung open for those willing to enter.
One of my sons recently asked, “Mom why is 17 year old black Trayvon Martin who was unarmed and shot  dead defined as a thug, but  21 year old white Dylann Roof who confessed to killing nine black worshippers June 21, 2015 in cold  blooded murder not described as a terrorist.”  I know evil when I see it and Dylann Roof is evil.  Though the victim’s families may choose to forgive him that is not for them alone to do but rests in G-d’s hands.  I stand squarely with South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley in believing Roof should be executed for exorcisms and nothing else as Shakespeare’s Macbeth notes can wash the stains from his hands or serve as a balm in Gilead to bring back the lives he took.  
Prematurely folks are piling on the Confederate Flag rather than revisit the US Constitution which guarantees freedom of speech, even for those with whom I may disagree.  Flags are a symbol of speech whether for those of the confederacy or blacks who adorn themselves with the black, red and green colors of liberation or the yellow of the Gadsden Flag adopted by many Tea Party affiliates with a snake noting “Don’t  Tread On Me”.   When I was awarded recognition as one of the “Ten Outstanding Young Women in America” by the Daughters of the American Revolution at Constitution Hall in 1984, it was not lost on me that here was the place where Mariam Anderson was denied the right to perform and ended up singing on their steps.  
I sense that those who are afraid, like sharks, smell blood in the water.  Illegal immigrants displaced workers from here and citizens mourn jobs which were never theirs of which many increasingly are becoming obsolete.  College  graduates panic  when they  may take  the easiest courses they can  find to graduate  ending up with mounds of  debt and no venue to parlay that  degree.   Dylann Roof hasn’t prepared himself where his color alone won’t allow him to rule.  Increasingly the pulse of mourning is a palpable fear remaining as it has been for all of our history.   Settlers came seeking escape from oppression now being reborn as the US continues trying to do something no other nations have accomplished in blending a diverse peoples.
I am not going to hold white folks hands or embrace blacks to assuage guilt in failing to make folks take responsibility for their actions.  I am not going to make nice and talk pleasantries when I know as a biologist that my 11th grade question to my teacher, John Henry Packenham hasn’t been answered -- “Why is it only within the human species that we find a classification of race?”  There is no race of birds or cats or dogs, etc.
Race is a false construct designed to give a sense of superiority to one group based on their color alone and provide them with resources often denied others.  It didn’t just start now but is as old as the pyramids where the Sphinx’s broad nose was destroyed by the Nazis or the Statue of Liberty’s purpose was usurped to welcoming immigrants rather than appreciating its design based on an Egyptian peasant, as a gift from France acknowledging the end of slavery.  
My father, left us a book about his father,  E. J. Fisher The Masters  Slave while my mother was a griot telling stories of her native American ancestry dating to the Pamunky Indians and Powhatan.  But it was mama’s remembrances of her walks with her grandma “Ginny” who was a white nurse for the confederacy which intrigued me.  As Edmund Burke wrote “Those who don’t understand history are doomed to repeat it.”  Taking down the Confederate flag only serves to obfuscate a poorly understood time in American history.
Blacks in an old Negro Spiritual sung, “No More weeping and a Wailing. . .” From my recent Israeli visit to the site of Masada, such remembrances constantly cause me and my fellow Jews to pledge “Never Again.”  Don’t dare touch the Second Amendment which allows me self-protection.
I have been called a “Nigger” more times than I often care to remember or had my opportunities limited by those of lesser character and abilities but often higher societal station.  I never forget what has happened to me and I like so many others must fight against those who limit opportunities for others based on ethnicity, religion or other characteristics. We must not go silently to the slaughter but fight, “ . . . marching on ‘til victory is won” to  preserve this constitutional republic’s democracy.
ADA M. FISHER IS A PHYSICIAN, A FORMER MEDICAL DIRECTOR IN A FORTUNE 500 COMPANY, PREVIOUS MEMBER OF A COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION, LICENSED SECONDARY EDUCATION TEACHER, AUTHOR, POET, GIFTED PUBLIC SPEAKER DR.AND IS THE NC REPUBLICAN NATIONAL COMMITTEEWOMAN.  HER BOOK COMMON SENSE CONSERVATIVE PRESCRIPTIONS SOLUTIONS GOOD FOR WHAT AILS US, BOOK I IS AVAILABLE THROUGH AMAZON.COM    CONTACT HER AT P. O. BOX 777; SALISBURY, NC 28145; DRFISHER@DRADAMFISHER.ORG. 

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