Racist to imagine a whites-only problem
In my mirror, I see a tanned professor who for years has educated people of all races, a member of the human race angered and grieving over George Floyd's murder, not the heavy-kneed white supremacist Chicago Tribune columnist Dahleen Glanton imagines when she writes, "White people, you are the problem."
Glanton defines racism as "based on the belief that one's own race is superior," so "black people cannot be racist" because they "have never experienced" superiority. I suggest Glanton experienced moral superiority in writing this definition, so she fits it. But immunizing one race while incriminating another is inherently racist.
Booker T. Washington and W.E.B. Du Bois did not see race as a "whites only" problem. Washington worked with white leaders to educate African Americans because both races needed to repair damage slave owners did to blacks. Du Bois promoted "the talented tenth" to show blacks could equal whites, but he also complained about black criminality.
George Floyd's murderer(s) will be brought to justice. But while racists like Glanton see whites as the problem, they see only a morally whitewashed image of their race-baiting, black-privileging selves, who are part of the problem as well.
Dr. Brian Hale
Standing against violent police
I am angry police have used tear gas, bean bag rounds, rubber bullets, mace and pepper spray on unarmed civilians. Force, when used on unarmed civilians — and unfortunately black and brown men, women and children suffer the brunt of this force — maims and kills. Guns, shields, batons, helmets, armored cars — these are symbols of fear, not courage. Police in riot gear have nothing to do with "protecting and serving" us. Their violence incites violence.
I'm tired of black people, poor people, mentally ill people, drug-addicted people dying for marginal offenses. These persons aren't "perfect." Neither am I. But they deserve more than death.
Chief David Roddy has done a good job this round. However, according to the Concerned Citizens for Justice, dozens of people have died while in law enforcement custody here between 1978 and 2009. Michael Lebron Earls is the only one I knew, and I knew him through his mother. On Christmas Day, 1990, Michael "stole" a pack of cigarettes. When the policeman/security guard came outside and tried to cuff him, he ran for his vehicle. He was shot and killed.
I didn't stand up for Michael Earls then. I'm standing up now.
Supporting Perez for school board
I made a donation to Marco Perez's school board campaign in April. I did that for the same reason I brought him on board as a business partner last year. He has a record of growing businesses, including businesses with tight budgets. Also, I have seen Marco provide leadership and take background roles in a variety of settings, and I respect his understanding of when he has something to learn rather than something to teach.
I made a second donation to Marco's campaign after I learned his opponent, Tom Decosimo, opposed Chattanooga's student-led protest against police brutality. The student organizers promoted the event as "silent and nonviolent." Hundreds attended and modeled unity, intelligence and compassion. I am excited and encouraged by their strength.
Decosimo's statement asked, "Is this the strident attitude that we want our students to adopt? ... Let's get our school board back into the hands of people with conservative and traditional values." Strident? Traditional? Yikes! Our students and teachers do not yearn for yesteryear; they have a fresh vision of a better future. I want to hear what they have to say. Let's elect Marco Perez to work with our schools, not against them.