A Reflection on Race

Apparently there are two different Americas - your Fox News America where you magnify the bad day your daughter had and totally dismiss the reality of very real, continuing thoughtful discussion and peaceful demonstrations. What is happening in your own town? They are happening in my town, all the neighboring towns and within my family. The only place it isn’t happening is within our local Seventh-day Adventist Church because when the topic comes up, the Fox News line arises, the anger arises and the conversation is shut down. Much to the consternation of our lovely black members. But it’s ok, according to you, since they have learned to be quiet and to stifle their own experiences and observations for the constant need to treat white folks with kid gloves.

True, there are black activist types who also need the kid glove treatment, but really, which group has the greater grounds for complaint? Anger among whites when they lose privileges which are often (but not always) unfair really doesn’t seem very godly to me. Not these days.

The conversation and mood I’m talking about Is fully available to you. All you have to do is tune into ABC or PBS to hear it constantly. Constructive dialogue. Not your fear mongering. Which has resulted in militarized police using all the excess weapons not needed in the Iraq war.

Speaking of daughters and militarize police, my own “black” (mixed) daughter, when chased by a bizarre raving tow truck driver while she was in Med School, ran to the police headquarters for safety, where, based solely on the testimony of the same tow truck driver, they arrested her.


OK, we’ll just call all the mayhem and theft “reparations” as did the head honcho of BLM. As and Adventist, (I assume), where KEEPING THE LAW matters above all else, that’s an odd stance.

There are horror stories on both sides, and I’m truly sorry for what happened to your daughter. To be naive, “two wrongs don’t make it right”. I can see if you live by the OT law, an" eye for an eye" this all might seem OK.

Fox News has become a copout. Like Biden said, in one of his incoherent mumblings, “We go by ‘truth’, not facts”. Yes, facts no longer matter - just whatever fills the narrative - that is the “story” you tell yourself. Let’s just see where this all ends up. I guess we deserve what we vote for.

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And why did all these Black men resist arrest? Because they knew from experience their lives were in danger.


Thank you, Roy, for an insightful and courageous essay. The systemic racism in America is rampant and pervasive. I do have hope that racism can be reduced, although reading many of the comments here, it seems dubious, even—perhaps, especially—in the Christian community. We cannot count on a heavenly blood transfusion. This is something that must be worked on consciously, conscientiously, with humility, in the place of the Spirit.


That is one possible reason. Fear is a big motivator of behavior. People of color may be more afraid of law enforcement than white suspects, but people of any color may also be resisting arrest or fleeing because they are intoxicated, high on drugs, have a warrant, do not want to go to jail, do not want to go back to jail, are in possession of illegal substances…etc…

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Yes, there may be a variety of reasons, but it seems to me Mr Casey is talking about a primary reason. Recently, on an online SS class, several Black persons spoke to this issue, not a single White person had that issue.

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You are right. I was reading it to mean the only reason.
I can see how people of color may be more afraid of law enforcement than whites. I’m surprised no white people in SS had that issue. I suppose as a person who attends AA, I have possibly known a more varied type of white people. Ones who panic at being pulled over by police because they have had experience with police and do not want to go back to jail, people who do not want to interact with police because they were in possession of illegal substances, or because they have violated some rule of their probation. So fear, but not because of fear for their life. I do see the difference. I was thinking of resistance in general, and fear in general.

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It seems to me this is a chicken-vs-egg situation.

Back in 1966 my dad bought himself a Pontiac GTO. Up until then he’d been driving a Dodge Dart without a ticket to his name. He was a 50 year old white man; but, driving the GTO he was followed by police cars pretty much everyday coming and going to work. What does that say about anything…


I gave you a like on your reply, because you were correct about your post. It doesn’t say anything abut anything. If you don’t understand the fear of a Black person, then just say so without trying to insinuate it is not real or not a real event. You know the old saying…walk in an other persons shoes…


Let me first say I am completely against the militarization of the police force. I feel that it represents the start of totalitarian regime control. The black uniforms, the boots, the armored personnel carriers, the war weapons and the bold lettering on their clothing, it is all about promoting fear and controlling crowds. These SWAT teams started all the way back in the 60’s and frankly, they are a real threat to democracy. If you pay attention to the presidential executive orders by Obama and Trump however, they are not much different in how they continue to curtail and reduce our freedoms. None of this has anything to do with race or color or even the BLM, We are certainly moving into a totalitarian one world government, and it may be here as soon as November/December depending on what happens with our “free and fair” election process.
This type of talk would label us conspiracy theorists just a few years ago right here in this very forum, but now that is clearly upon us my recommendation would be: to stop watching Fox, MSNBC, ABC, CBS, CNN, and yes, even PBS. I turned the news off in 2009, right about the same time I joined Spectrum, after it became evident it was affecting our friendships, even those that were not multi-racial.
I am not living in a cave either, I carefully select sources of news where I can confirm shared value systems and mostly we are focusing on deepening our knowledge about what is happening in the world with a biblical perspective.

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I did not say that, nor did I “insinuate” it. I don’t insinuate. Of course the fear is real. There may be someone who understood what I meant. Obviously it wasn’t you.

Your post about cars said what? What did you mean by your last statement… “What does that say about anything…”? Give me a benefit of the doubt, because I took your short post as meaning, ‘what difference does it make’. I based that presumption on previous postings.

I apologize if I misunderstood what you were trying to say.

I would suggest that after all the discussion on race we give serious thought to this in the context of the Gospel. It seems to me that our adding our own little man-made cultural conditions to the Good News has made even our religion exclusive and conditional. We need to change the message to make all persons of equal value and treat them accordingly. We can continue down the current path where we by word and deed convey an implied message that people are in classes and that our class is better or different or persecuted. In fact our religion has made us look for this victimhood status. Just my 2 cents worth but it appears to me that God has spent a long time from our perspective to preserve freedom of choice and the only thing we are asked to do is love and accept everyone this is the example Christ brought. The NT clearly makes acceptance unconditional and free to all can we live with that? Can we live like that? The way of bondage is still there offering us clarity and security but with it comes a lose of compassion and empathy, everyone in their place, this is why we need to stand for The Way. It is truly Good New that all are loved and accepted freely.


Hey Harry, what I said is the truth, and it can’t be negated by your personal put downs of me. Thomas Sowell, a respected black columnist, admitted as much himself, and it was only a few years ago. I do not ally with white supremacists, neither am I going to sit by silently when this collective guilt bull is aimed at non colored people.


German Reformer Martin Luther, when commenting on civil unrest, distinguished between the domain of the sword [civil authority] and the spirit [gospel authority]. An insurrection arose, known as the Peasant’s Rebellion. They tried to connect their brigandry to the Reformation cause, not unlike those criminal elements today who want to connect their cause to civil rights. Luther advised dealing with them in a severe manner. They had already demonstrated they were not subject to gospel order. What was left was the sword. He outlined his reasoning in a treatise titled “Against the Robbing and Murdering Hoards of Peasants.”

Tom, I liked the way you worded it. Precise, short, and true.

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Thanks, @bigtomwoodcutter. It’s good to be in exchange with you.

So, let’s walk through what you’ve said.

You said:

Which part? All of it?

That is, you say:

It’s hard to say if this is “true,” or not.

That is, many Black men have abdicated their responsibilities—there isn’t just one—as fathers. But many white men have abdicated their responsibilities as fathers, also.

So, is this happening for the same reasons?

It’s hard to say, because you begin your short treatise with the words,

Like the biblical “therefore,” this seems to indicate that there is another, earlier idea which makes your premise compelling.

But what it is—and how is it affected by the fact that many white men have abdicated their responsibilities as fathers, also—is impossible to tell, because you do not include it.

Then you say,

This is a true statement. It’s true, much like the rate of birth by unwed white mothers cannot be just ignored.

(I take it that you mean “should not be ignored”; obviously, it can be ignored, and is by many people.)

But what is its relationship to the previous sentence? Well, again, it’s hard to tell, because of the earlier void in your text.

Then you say:

So, who are “these demonstrators”? Which ones? How do you know that this is how they feel? Have they told you this? All of them? Any of them?

If they’ve not told you this, how do you know that this is what they “want”?

Also, suppose there are demonstrators who do want to blame the ills you describe on racism.

So what? What’s wrong with that?

I mean, racism is a big, nasty bug, right? Hard to kill.

If you’re actually a woodcutter, like your nom may imply, you may be familiar with big, nasty bugs. Some big, nasty bugs affect the growth of trees, the quality of lumber, and the yield of forest harvests.

Suppose a particular big, nasty bug did this for 400 years, all over your country.

Suppose this kept you, your pappy, your grand-pappy, all of his pappies and grand-pappies, and all of their pappies and grand-pappies from woodcutting, and thus providing for your and their pregnant wives.

If this happened, wouldn’t you say that, to at least some degree, the big, nasty bug was responsible?

I think any reasonable entomologist, especially if she was working with a sociologist, might.

Then you say.

O.K., sure, you can buy whatever you like. But you haven’t yet established that it’s a copout, because

  1. You haven’t shown that anyone actually thinks the way that you say they do—you provide no verifiable quotes or other evidence—nor

  2. Do you demonstrate how, if they do think that way, their logic is flawed.

It was on all of these bases that I said:

They did. Also, I take this broadside—with what turns out to be a generic evocation of rampant, irresponsible, Black sexuality—to be one also, if only because it is headless; absent of context; you don’t say what the “Well” is that provides “no small wonder.”

Then, I say,

Factual. I could log into my Harvard library account, and provide you with most of that scholarly research, for free, if you wanted to read it.

I, then, said,

No problem there. I suspect a lot of those smart white authors are racists, and I suspect you are, also.

That’s only a form of due diligence, as long as racism has a sole, functional form—white supremacy—and as long as the minimal requirement to practice white supremacy is that one be white.

Then I said:

They do. I’m not saying that you are uneducated, or proud. You might have nine Ph.D.s., and scrub toilets in a men’s shelter on weekends, just to give back.

I’m saying that arranging your thoughts, both in the way that you have, and the manner that you have, makes you sound uneducated.

It does. I know, because I read what you wrote, I analyzed it, and, as you might tell by the above breakdown, I didn’t just toss off a reply.

Finally, I say:

This is also true. If you’d have answered my questions, a lot of the concerns I have would not have been raised.

Now, I also suspect that the argument in your previous post—the one to which I first replied—was not carefully considered, either.

But, had you replied to my queries, in good faith, I’m confident that we could have worked out those differences.

Now, let’s get to the rest of your response. This will be quick.

As I said, It’s not true, and I haven’t put you down.

Thomas Sowell is not a respected Black columnist. I assure you that, like Resident Trump, more than half of the people who know of his work do not respect him, making him not respected, by definition.

Perhaps you don’t, and I appreciate you saying this.

However, I am not going to take your word on this.

In my opinion, many white people do not have a highly-developed ear for racism, especially their own.

So, when they deny association with it, I typically hold out for more evidence.

…Which, to quote one of the world’s great musicals, brings us back to do:


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Apparently, for once, I 2/3rds agree with @GeorgeTichy, @bigtomwoodcutter.** It was precise and short. It was not true.

But only 2/3rds? MAN!

Well, we know what Meatloaf said about that….

I like the way you worded it also. As you know, by now, your brevity of phrase enabled me to make short work of it, for which I’m thankful.



Yes, you got it wrong.

We all react to each other based on previous experiences we have had. The police are no different. If they have had bad experiences with black offenders, they will assume they are going to have a bad experience when confronted, and will react accordingly.

The car story simply demonstrates this. The police assumed, that because they spotted a GTO (known to be a “muscle” car) they were going to have to pull it over. This is called “conditioning”. Undoubtedly black kids in inner cities are a problem (ie:Chicago). Whatever the expectations are on both sides, they will react accordingly.

This problem of distrust is deep seated and can’t be fixed by repeating slogans. It gets fixed one interaction at a time. I don’t believe all parties concerned have the best intentions.

I want to add, when it comes to behaviour, you often get what you expect to get. When I was teaching, I made it a point not to focus too much on the behaviour part of the student’s record. If a teacher enters a relationship expecting problems, she will surely get them.


Thread closed 2 days early due to incivility from numerous commenters. -WebEd