Sunday, March 08, 2009

Color-Blind America?

GREENVILLE - City Council members are speaking out about their votes last week over whether to approve funds for travel/training requests.

Betty Watkins, Carl McGee and Errick Simmons on Tuesday voted to send Police Chief Charles Patterson, Capt. Andrew Kaho and Lt. Xavier Redmond to Jackson to attend the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Region III conference. The cost is $288.50 each.

Ann Hollowell, Kenny Gines and Lee Owen voted against.

However, the motion passed when Mayor Heather McTeer Hudson broke the tie by voting in favor of approving the travel expenses.** (end of article by Terri Ferguson of the DDT)

I have a problem with our city tax dollars paying to go to ANY Race specific event. I would be more likely to agree a need, if the conference had been for Police Leaders in General and not "Black Only". Same goes for the city paying for the Mayor attending "The Black Mayor's Conference". Our tax dollars should be specifically related to the population in general. If these people want to attend a race specific event, then they should be willing to pay their own way. If Lee Owens requested funds to attend a "White Council conference", can you imagine the roar from those who do the same???

If we are going to get past racism, we need to get at least past the tax dollars paying to support race specific events and groups.

African Americans who continue to differentiate themselves as members of "black" organizations are simply perpetuating the stereotypical views of "separate, but equal". Are there black and white "laws" and are they enforced differently by our police officers?

Do black mayors manage cities differently than white mayors? What are these "members only" secrets that need to be segregated by race?

This "labeling" only perpetuates racism and serves to further divide our communities. However, as for our mayor's approving these "black" travel requests, I am afraid that she would appear a bit hypocritical had she not voted to approve any one's travel requests, given her last year in office.

Continuing education is a good thing which should be supported by community leaders; however, the stink about this issue is the use of the term "black" as somehow being "different". If we are all truly equal, why do we need to differentiate ourselves as black, white or purple?

We will never get beyond racism until all races quit pointing to our differences, rather than our similarities.



Anonymous said...

Not to fear! As I was viewing Hannity the other day, he had a visitor(black) on his show that said in 50 years the US will all be one race any way.

Terry said...

I agree, Not to Fear! I am a member of the organization of which you speak. No one's going there to talk about how to initiate the next 'Black' uprising. Your comments seem to come from a place of fear in your own heart. Why don't you check out the agenda for the meeting/conference. You might be surprised to find that topics covered relate specifically to how to address community ills, how to serve the population, training in different areas of law enforcement, and how officers of ethnic origin can find support. Not very threatening, huh?

Color blind stands said...

It is NOT a matter of threatening, it is a matter of tax dollars paying for staff or personell to attend these functions. No doubt the organizations are fundamentally educational, etc. If anyone wants to attend, please feel free to do so...but not on tax dollars for a race specific event...that is the point. If it is so important, then those who want to attend can take their earned days off and their cash to attend. No one is suggesting to not go, if desired, just don't expect a tax paid for trip. How far does this standing policy go? If there were a Catholic leadership meeting for Mayors or for Council members, would that be okay? How about an NAACP meeting for Black City leaders?

Sorry, I still stand on this issue as politically INCORRECT.

Oh and I have been informed, but it is not confirmed, that the Mayor does not belong to the National Conference of Mayors, only the Black Conference of is that right if that is true?

American qualifies said...

Maybe if these "changes" took place, it would lead to other organizations following suit.

Let's get rid of Miss Black America for example, Black women, as well as other nationalities are well represented in the Miss America pageant and many other non-race specific pageants, so why is there a need for a race specific pageant of any kind?

kennard said...

If there was an "Assholes in Law Enforcement" conference, would these same people attend?

Billy Club said...

There used to be a Organization of White Law Enforcement officers here in the Delta, it had lots of members in 1950. But it has lost all it's members due to the voting rights act of 1964.

Anonymous said...

I hope at least one of the Council members is reading all this...and agrees!

Anonymous said...

This sickens me. In a time of economic distress, who in their right mind would approve this racist celebration? Why do African Americans continue to differentiate themselves and send vibes that promote racism? If a white leader attended a white anything conference, there would be riots, followed by a call to remove them from office. I don't see the Chinese, Indian, or Hispanic community here in the Delta causing a continual bru ha ha over their heritage. We all have a heritage, but let's face it this is out of hand! Another reason no one is excited about residing here.

Anonymous said...

And it will continue until the white man stands up for himself. Otherwise he(the white man) might as well just sit in the corner and suck there thumb and keep quite.

Whitey Smith said...

Anyone want to start "100 White men of the Delta"? It could be fun, we could have secret meetings, parades, etc. I don't think anyone would take it the wrong way, it would be just group of folks trying to make things better, and really getting in to their heritage. Anyone that had a problem with it could be labled a racist, and that would shut them up fast, because no one wants to a racist do they? We could pick a little local resturant to meet at, but it would have to be closed during the meeting. Anyone up for it?

Anonymous said...

Benoit Outing Club is all-white. Too bad there is nothing left there to hold a meeting in.
Wait, there is a mis-managed bait shop! Caucasions Only, of course.

Empty pockets! said...

Clubs can do as they please in my opinion, just don't ask me to pay the dues, as in this case with the GPD or the Mayor at their Black conferences

Outraged citizen said...

I think that the city counsel should flatly deny any travel request to an organization that denotes "race" or "gender" in their title. It should be adopted as a standing policy with no exceptions.

The city should then draft a letter to those organization explaining that the city of Greenville does not condone racism or discrimination at any level and will not support or sponsor orgnizations which do so.

Maybe when we hit these groups in the pocketbook they will get the message. Greenville needs to take a stand on this!

Question: Does the club "100 Black Men" allow white and/or female members? If not, how is this different from the signs of the 1960s proclaiming "Whites Only"?

It's NOT! It is just an excuse to keep racism alive and well in the Delta!

A'int happening! said...

Okay, let's not get carried away. For what your argument says, that would close down Brownies, Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts and Boys Scouts, etc.....there are good reasons to have some same sex clubs, for the right reasons.

I totally agree that our tax dollars should not support any race specific function or event.

I love your stance to the Council and the Mayor.....but as long as she is Mayor and can break tie votes....forgetaboutit!

Happening said...

I meant to say that I do not support our Council, Mayor or City Staff members attending a race or ethnic specific event or function with our tax dollars.

It would certainly be acceptable for the Council and Mayor to support organizations like the Scouts, etc...entirely different matter.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, last time I checked...I don't see the Benoit Outing Club asking for handouts to send delegates to a racist meeting. What a pitiful excuse for a local government.

Anonymous said...

Uh oh, I hear the illustrious Allyson Williams has been relieved of her duties at her job in Monroe, LA. Scandalous rumors are flying!!

Anonymous said...

Boy does that 100 White Men Organization sound like a good idea. We need to raise money for some under- privleged white children and families. I am serious when i say this ! I know i can raise some money. Probably enough for the organization to be labeled racist. Have the 100 Black Men ever helped out a White Family ? Just Curious !

Back off some said...

**Have the 100 Black Men ever helped out a White Family ? Just Curious!**

There is nothing wrong with this organization. They are all about educating black male children to become responsible adults and fathers. That is their mission. Check their site: That is how they began. It is an admirable cause and NOT supported by the tax funds either. I wish that they had come up with a less race specific name, but then they are directing their attentions to their male black population to get that majority on track BEFORE they get off on the wrong one. They are showing black men what it means to be an honorable man and a dedicated, loving father, as well.

So, take it easy on them, their mission is a large one.

I suspect that indirectly they have helped white children, white boys can learn the same lessons of responsibility, accountability, honor and self-respect.

They are out to stop or at least lessen the black on black crimes and that will also lead to the same with black on white crimes, as well.

This group is totally different and separate than the topic at hand.

Legitimate Clubs and Organizations should be free to support their own causes.....but...and the key to all of this...NOT on OUR tax dollars!

Back off some author said...

Oh and by the way, that last post came from a white woman...not a black or a man!

Anonymous said...

There is also nothing wrong with directing funds toward white males with the same problem.
No one ever said that what they were doing was not admirable. My point is there has been so much discussion from the black community about not looking at everyday life as black and white and up pops a organization directing all funds to a black male. I absolutely do not have a problem with their goal ; i have a problem with the perception.
Our mayor without a doubt see's everything as black and white and under her leadership Greenville will never move forward.

Anonymous said...

Change the subject. My college-age son and I were watching the local news and heard that the local Pizza Inn, A&W, and Long John Silver's all had closed recently. He commented that it was no wonder, as he had not visited any of those places in all the years he's been independently mobile---they simply did not interest him. I quote: "If people want to have a successful restaurant in Greenville or anywhere else, why don't they simply appeal to the desired demographic?" There are HUNDREDS of local folks---and thousands beyond our city limits---who crave a nice location for a meal, someplace they don't have to be ashamed to take a date, someplace that is as much a destination as a diner. How hard would it have been to open a McAllister's deli rather than a silly A&W/LJSilver combo. Totally wrong demographic! If you want your restaurant to survive, then appeal to the group that has the money to spend. We don't want another hot wings trailer or tamale shack. We want a location, a place to spend a pleasant evening with friends. We don't want another national pizza franchise---we want Lost Dog Pizza! We don't want another Taco Bell---we want Newk's Express or Sweet Pepper's Deli. Pay attention!!!! Heather, Betty Lynn, Ed: get the word out, please. We will THROW money out of the car window as we drive up! Just give us some better options.

Anonymous said...

amen! to the last comment. what happened to pizza inn? i ate there at least once a week.

Old faces stopped new places said...

We attended the Italian Festival in Cleveland, this past weekend and really enjoyed it. The news said over 5,000 attended too. Now at $5 for each admission, that is outstanding for their third year results. To top that, it was a rainy dreary day! Folks came out anyway because it was all inside.

Afterwards, we went to the new restaurant "Lost Dog Pizza". Very unique and the best pizza I have had in years, Dominos and the rest of the franchises don't come close!

I would love to see one come here too. It was a fun family place.

Over the years, from what I have been told, the opportunities have been here to have the variety, but our city leaders over the same years, screwed it up with demands and expectations of "what you going to do for my peoples" so the places changed their mind.

That is it! said...

Yes, I know of several restaurants and other franchises that have approached our city and county leaders and ran into road blocks of higher than "their norm" wages demand, expensive training for untrained and uneducated population, and overall arrogance from our leaders of HOW they should do more for Greenville employees, lessen their standards and pay wonder they ran!

Lost Dog Pizza has a great pool to pull from in the Cleveland area, no worries there for educated, appreciative qualified workers.

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