Posts Tagged ‘Fort Hood’

seal black

While attending an event at my Black college, the seal of the state of Georgia struck me because the words “Justice, Wisdom, Moderation” were right there on the lectern.  My undergrad buddies often joked that we shouldn’t pay our student loans because we did not learn moderation on campus but our state would seriously be a better place if all Georgians lived my that motto.


The classic joke in my community was that the government has justice in the penal system because the prisons were filled with “just us.”  When you listen to the fellows who have done time, they are often the first to admit that prisons and jails are needed because they were doing some really bad things and those guys actually want their families protected from the type people they were.  Without opening a dictionary, justice to me is the fair execution of law.  Those to blatantly ignore law are injustice or criminal; that would include Georgians who continued to mistreat African Americans after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that we had certain “unalienable rights.”  As Chuck D rapped in the 1980s, “we can’t wait for the state to decided the fate.”  The best way to avoid wrongful treatment in the justice system is to avoid being involved with the justice system.  In a strange twist of fate, crimes perpetrated in my community are done to us by people who look like us.  If these kids think we are going to be imprisoned in our homes (fortified in private dwellings), they have another thought coming. 


For me, wisdom is knowledge that comes from years of experience.  I have always admired the deference and respect youth in Asian cultures generally give their elders.  Those elders in turn share their wisdom and cultural history to illuminate the path toward success and better living.  (See where I am going with this.)  In my southern Black community, we listened to the old school guys at the barbershops and in the church parking lots. While we were adventurous on some level, we would have been dead or locked up without the teachings of those wise men—okay, a lot of parental praying too.  Where are those wise cats today while many of our youth run around wild and aimlessly?  Oh, that would be us…we are the cool old cats but these kids today walk by while I do yard work without speaking. 

On campus yesterday, the number of students who sincerely greeted me amazed me—did they think I was a professor who would eventually grade their papers or are they the good kids we should mention more often.  We have fine young people in the military and on campus and if give the opportunity I would sharing my wisdom with them. “Beer before liquor…you will get sicker quicker…beer before wine, you will be fine.”  Seriously, American is in a global economic battle and the rest of the world is hungry for opportunities and driven toward success; China holds now much of our debt.   Wise people dance around the face that some of our worst youth were born to parents who were ill prepared to raise responsible Americans.  Yeah, I said it.  The social dilemma becomes how do we encourage people to become parents when/if they are fully prepared for that daunting tasking.  Liberals won’t say it out loud but in the backs of their minds they are hoping that a stupid couple will not bring more stupid people on this earth…to rob them. It is a matter of ethics and a quiet component in the abortion debate.  I am not wise enough to call it so I defer to others and hope they are right.


Moderation is such a beautiful word because we must take it slowly and easy in most parts of life.  Of course, my politics is based on avoiding the extremes or coming to reasonable decisions that reflect the views of all involved parties. In the South, we are the descendents of slaves and slave owners.  Whites who did not owe slaves were saving up to get some–people on layaway.  It must be difficult making public policy for diverse groups in the same geographic location.  “Too much of anything can be risky” is obviously true about food, alcohol, tobacco, sex and partying.  But, the same can be said to a lesser degree about charity, assistance, and maybe religion.  I did not say faith and love of the Lord but religion, the earthly institution.  Hear me out. 

Men administer churches and men are human.  In the zeal to have a successful church, men sometimes get caught up in competition with other churches.  Of course, they will refer to passages in the scriptures that command actions against those to seek to subjugate “our” church.  When we were kids, we could not understand if that mindset was directly from God or put there by those who translated the teachings into English.  “Why is this the King James Version…let’s find the original…there is no telling what was put in or conveniently left out like “don’t enslave folks.”  We were some inquisitive little Methodists.

How many times have you seen people get so enthusiastic about their faith or culture that they are moved to do anything to promote it or do anything to those they thought are against it.  Moderation is taught in every major religion and the teachings tell the righteous what to do when faced with the opposition and evil.  “Forgiven them father for they know not what they do..”  The horrible actions at Fort Hood last week could be the deeds of a sick mind or someone whose weak mind was overcome by his zeal for his faith.  It is hard to “lighten up” when you are convinced that you are 100% correct but people can’t just “go off” or “set it off.”  If anyone had reasons to go off it was the Blacks being enslaved in America, the Blacks who suffered de facto oppression in America until recently, the Jews who were murdered at the hands of the Nazis or the Native Americans who had two continents stolen from them. 

Take it easy, relax, and be moderate in your actions were often to words from the wise because overreacting to wrongdoings can go against the laws of the state; and the holy scriptures command respect for those laws.  That’s why I am so surprised by the revolutionary posture of the Tea Party movement.  While I understand their concerns with the size, spending and taxes of the federal government, flirting with overthrowing America is too much.  For years, other groups inside America patiently worked within the system to get rights they should have enjoyed in 1776 (women, Latinos, Blacks, Native Americans, non-landowning Whites.)  But, elected a Congress and President that some don’t like (elect with the majority of the voters mind you) and some people lose their minds.  Don’t sleep, if some people don’t get their way, they will split this nation.  Remember Fort Sumter.

Justice, Wisdom, Moderation    

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