Following is a Letter to the Editor of the Columbus Dispatch I wrote in late December of 2016. It was written to express the concerns many of my neighbors and I felt about the reality of a Trump Presidency. The letter was published in the Dispatch in its entirety at that time.
Self explanatory letter to Senator Rob Portman delivered via email.
I have not written on my blog in recent months. I was so demoralized by the outcome of the 2016 Presidential Election I just needed time to reflect. I was never enamored with Clinton, but I knew from observing him for 30 years that Trump was dangerous. I could not, and after 8 months of the Trump Administration still can’t, imagine what will become of our country if we actually have to endure 4 years of this insanity.
A white police officer shoots an unarmed black citizen in Tulsa, OK. The citizen’s life is suddenly over and the officer’s life is probably ruined. I’m sure the black man did not do anything intentionally that he thought would provoke deadly force against him. Likewise, I’m certain that the white officer did not set out to kill anyone that day. She probably did suffer real though unwarranted fear for her life. Most likely both were innocent victims of the racial suspicion, fear, and hatred that bubbles just below the surface in our society.
It is time to abandon the death penalty in Ohio!! Most objective observers agree that it has no deterrent value against violent crimes. It costs taxpayers much more to execute than to incarcerate for life. And it is certainly inhuman for the rare but real minority of death row inmates actually innocent of the crime for which they are sentenced to die. We should substitute life in prison at hard labor without parole as a more rational alternative to the death penalty.
The story of the 13 year old boy shot by Columbus Police last Wednesday night is a tragedy of the first order. I beg the community to wait for the investigation to be completed before rushing to judgement.
Georgetown University recently got national attention for acknowledging its participation in, and benefit from, the institution of slavery. It seems that Georgetown Jesuits kept meticulous records of their ownership and sale of slaves. So they know exactly who was affected. The detail of that history was documented and made public by the University. It should be commended for starting a potential healing process on such a charged issue.
It has been 51 years since the Selma-to-Montgomery civil rights march of 1965. That (Bloody Sunday) was one of the turning points in the civil rights movement because TV captured the sheer brutality of white rule in the South. So after 5 decades have we achieved racial equality in the South, or anywhere else in America for that matter? Hardly! Not even close!!
Over the years I have come to realize that racial injustice is at the center of virtually all of our American societal challenges. If we were to choose to achieve racial equality (both in law and in life) we could easily manage and/or eliminate nearly all our internal domestic problems.