Letters to the Editor
Back in the days when I was growing up, it seemed like all the neighbors helped each other out, simply out of the kindness of their heart and it was the Christian thing to do. Over time, it seems like everyone expects to be paid for any little thing, and the act of kindness has been dwindling over years. I think that this world would be a much better place if there were more people who truly are Christians and are willing to help out. Pay it forward; you never know when that person will help you in ways that you never expect.
We personally are glad to know that there are still a few of these kind people out in this rough world. Our neighbors, Allan and Charissa Olson, have helped us out in so many ways that they don’t realize. Allan comes over to remove the snow from our driveway and never expects anything in return, simply does it out of the kindness of his heart.
We will never be able to repay him, but we are thankful for having such a great neighbor. This is true humanity; this is a true Christian. You are a true example of how the human race should treat others.
“Conflating MLK’s Legacy with Race De-emphasis”
When citing the familiar line “I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character,” from Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s “I Have A Dream” speech, persons (Steve Bakke, “Clashes with MLK’s legacy–but not what you think” LM Graphic 4/11/18), often conflate MLK’s legacy and work by reducing the relative importance of race with a de-emphasis on color. Color blindness is a more nuanced term for this de-emphasis, but it amounts to the same thing.
Racial color blindness reflects an ideal society in which skin color is insignificant. Proponents of “color-blind” practices believe that treating people equally, inherently leads to a more equal society or that racism and race privilege no longer exercise the power they once did.
The problem with the logic of de-emphasizing race, i.e. color, is that MLK said he didn’t want his children judged by the color of their skin. He never said he wanted the color of their skin to be ignored. Given America’s history, absolute colorblindness, both in attitude and in policy, has a dangerously disparate impact on people of color, as the recent incident at the Philadelphia Starbucks restaurant makes plain.
Colorblindness does not foster equality or respect; it merely relieves me of my obligation to address important racial differences and difficulties. To say it unapologetically—racial de-emphasis thrives off unexamined claims of color blindness while simultaneously engaging in highly racialized practices. That’s the world, I believe, MLK was talking about; a world challenged by the Civil Rights Movement and a world which requires we judge people by the content of their character through understanding how their character is shaped by the reality of the color of their skin.
Rev. Jerry E. Robertson, retired