Thursday, September 17, 2009

Where There Is Sadness, Joy!

This is the beautiful and ever inspiring Burns Sisters. With the passing of Mary Travers and the resurgence of racism and hatred in America, take a moment to listen to a prayer for joy.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Mama Told Me Not To Come

Want some whiskey in your water?
Sugar in your tea?
Whats all these crazy questions theyre askin me?
This is the craziest party that could ever be
Dont turn on the lights cause I dont wanna see
Mama told me not to come
Mama told me not to come
She said that aint the way to have fun, son
That aint the way to have fun, son

As the days of protest ground on in the Sixties, it got louder, noisier, nuttier and finally the cities were on fire.

Anyone up for a repeat of that except this time without the good music?

Not moi. Some pointers:

1. The tea baggers are Americans. They have the right to protest. One may not agree with their signs but then we did ourselves no favors with the Sarah Palin bashing and the Hillary Clinton bashing. Don't say it's not the same. It's EXACTLY the same.

2. The tea baggers have some points to make. Listen to them. If you can refute those points calmly and with facts, do so. Otherwise, DO NOT ENGAGE. This is critical. Having both sides throwing gas on a log fire is bound to set the forests ablaze. Everyone will lose.

3. Change doesn't come without discomfort. These people are scared. They should be. The forces out there who are pouring money into these campaigns are doing their best to scare them. Before calling them ignorant, racist rednecks, take a look at those cool cats on Wall Street and in the multi-nationals paying the big money to scare them.

4. Some of these people are racists. That's a fact. It is a disease and it will never be vanquished as long as there are differences to fear however stupidly. Calling them that won't change it. Worse, many of them, in fact the majority are not racists. Save that tag for when someone's civil rights are being denied them. The race card is too important to play it when all the other side has is a pair of deuces. Worse, it is incindiary. It sets a fire that won't be easily put out. Save it for the real thing.

Stay cool. Learn the facts. Answer the charges with the facts. Most of those people are good people upset and scared but determined. In their minds and hearts they believe they have to stand up for America. Let them know you are marching with them wherever our freedoms are threatened. Use reason and calm presentation to show them their freedoms are in fact not being threatened.

Don't surrender to your rage. As the rabbi said, an eye for eye leaves us all blind.

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