Letter to the Editor: Proclaim the message of opportunity, advancement, freedom, and thanks

By Tom Glendinning

Pittsboro, NC – This letter is in response to the article by Reverend Carl Thompson that appeared in the Chatham News & Record newspaper on October 9, 2020.

The Chatham County NAACP message published recently was a call to action. It was a professionally crafted message which harkened back to the 1960’s period when the victimhood of racism was real, racial poverty someone else’s fault in reality, and Whitey was holding down blacks in many ways in the south especially. 

I want to address several of the issues raised in the well written article of Reverend Carl Thompson. 

Medicaid expansion has haunted North Carolina Democrats since its rejection. It is the same as Obamacare, which was not affordable and had problems with delivery of medical care. Yet Democrats mislead the public with unrealistic statistics which mean little in the framework of our whole population and health care system. 

Democrats state refusal to allow expansion is racist. A good tale, but compared to Democrats funding abortion with federal monies is a tale told by fools. 

In states where it was adopted, small hospitals and medical practices failed, cost reimbursements were dictated, costs became more than advertised, and quality of services were lowered. This government intervention into medicine has caused more problems than it was supposed to fix. Yet Democrats fake numbers not served to enhance the drama. The unserved under government  health plan is a small number given the total insured and otherwise served. Any supporting statements of saving is misleading, to put it mildly, just as the advertised savings of Obamacare. A simple augmentation of existing programs could easily serve the uninsured. But they have been traditionally served by generosities and write offs of providers for over a hundred years. Take the government out of medicine. Lose the term “health care.” Look at simpler solutions to the problem. 

COVID-19 exploitation is suspect, at least. Powers that be: 

  • Use this flu/virus to make America compliant 
  • Refuse to approve a drug known to be effective that has passed FDA otherwise State confusing numbers of number sick and number dead specifically of COVID Democrats criticize Trump for “pandemic,” when he acted perfectly for prevention (It was Obama who granted millions in research funds to the Wuhan lab)
  • High number of black and Hispanic mortalities blamed on racism, not cultural habits. Their mandate, “never let a good crisis go to waste,” is a campaign cry this fall. 

Poverty is lowest ever in US and the world.

  • Black unemployment is lowest in recent history.
  • Black health is better than ever.
  • Black wealth is higher than ever. 

Not a good time for Democrats. They: 

  • Are caught in lies – top to bottom, left to farther left, bolstered by bought & sold media
  • Have an alcoholic leading the party in congress. 
  • Feel compelled to waste valuable congressional time grandstanding with impeachment
  • Feel compelled to blame all ills on Trump 
  • Have wasted one whole session with a majority passing nothing significant Yet a Democratic House majority is supposed to be good for blacks 
  • Done nothing constructive in four years is wasteful for our lawmakers 
  • And one major contribution to history and equality is forgotten, the Civil War. 

If there is racism practiced in an organization, it is particular to that organization and not a “system.” It usually is a tacit policy of leadership. 

At one time, the Chatham County schools practiced a subtle form. Black students would be “socially passed” without gaining skills or knowledge. This led to unprepared young men and women in society and the workplace. The syndrome played into the racist image of dumb blacks, while the cause lay in system. Results were tragic and lifelong. 

I hired one such man who was one of the finest men with whom I have had the privilege to work. I discovered his deficiency one day when I handed him the plans and specs for a job. When I reviewed the job later on, some things had not been done which were clearly specified. I drilled down to why. He was such a perfect employee, I could not understand the shortcoming. Turns out, he could not read. I enlisted him in a reading program. I heard that he is doing well today. That is the “systemic racism” as I have witnessed. But it is not our whole society, nor is it “systemic.” It was the action of one man on the system under his control. Truly, it should be called GR or OR, group or organizational racism. 

Anyone preaching the division of humans is not preaching the word of God. Yes, those who are called may choose to believe or not. That is the divine division. But our ministry is to all. Jesus taught us to pray for all, sinners, the apostate, the lost, even our enemies. For you never know when the next righteous act may turn the heart. Likewise, the establishment and defense clause is also in the bible. David conquered the whole region which became the Promised Land, an area ten times the size of Israel today. And who was with him? GOD 

“Whitey” founded the United States of America based on belief in Christ and scripture. It is governed by the second (third) constitution giving power of decision to the people. The institution of slavery was abolished, all citizens given the vote. 
Whites gave blacks the vote. 
Whites gave women the vote. 
Whites passed legislation protecting black & minority rights. 
Whites spent $ 11 trillion dollars in programs for blacks since the 1960’s. And it isn’t enough according to some people! 

Tell me, sir, preacher to the flock, how do you start out your prayers? With gimme’s and pleas? Or thanks? I acknowledge the Almighty with thanks. And among my pleas is patience with  understanding, when I am ready for it. I am not granted all my wishes and pleasures. I am given what I need in His wisdom. 

The extortion strategy will work only on those infected by white guilt. Allow me to paint a picture. You were freed at the cost of 110,000 northern boys/men and total disruption of life in their communities and states. My town sent 9000 boys down south to serve. How many returned? But we freed 4 million slaves. That was a good return in investment. ROI of 3600%. We got no reparations. I owe you nothing. Yet you plead for more pointing your finger at us as if we do.

Why not begin your prayer, your sermon, with thanks at the opportunity granted to you and all citizens of this country. When I moved here in 1964, blacks were driving ten and twenty year old cars and pickup trucks. Now, they drive new cars, some of them Lexus, Mercedes, BMW’s. Why just the other day, while campaigning at an Eastgate intersection in Chapel Hill, I saw a black woman driving a Maserati. FYI, beginning price $73,000. Highest price $2 million. What about the fine brick homes built by black families during the 1960’s and 1970’s alongside those built by whites, financed by the same lending institutions? And you want us to believe that Whitey is holding you down? 

Where did the $11 trillion of tax monies go that was spent on the US black community, poverty programs, rent subsidies, food stamps, welfare, educational grants, block grants? Al and Jesse might know where some of it went. Both are brothers in the cloth. 

Opportunity is abundant. If there is some goal not yet attained by the community you represent, state it so that it may be measured or found worthy or wanting. Instead of playing the race card and preaching victimhood, why not proclaim the message of opportunity, advancement, freedom, and thanks? I know you do on Sundays. I have heard it. 

grayscale photography of people raising hands
Photo by Luis Quintero

This is not the gospel of Jesus the Christ, promising life after death. It is the promise of a good life today and tomorrow, based on justice. If there is a flaw in our system, it is misapplied or undelivered justice. That is the measure of our American achievements. We are human and will not deliver perfection. Our Pledge of Allegiance, our Bill of Rights, our Constitution are promises. They state the ideals for which we strive, and do not always attain.  

Freedom does not come without justice. We need to focus on that. 

We have so much, that tricks of memory do not credit what we have achieved. So in our best human vision, what we can reach for today is granted on the shoulders upon which we stand. Anything less would condemn our forefathers and curse our mothers. The gospel of wealth must include the intangibles which grace our lives in this country blessed by God. 

I plea with you, my lifelong friend, to frame another epistle beginning with thanks. Make a plea for wholeness for you and all of us to attain the next goal together. You know the scripture. “With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.”