Friday, June 19, 2009

Racing to Apologize

There is no such thing as a little freedom. Either you are all free, or you are not free.
--Walter Cronkite

Believe it or not, Congress is getting close to finally issuing an apology for slavery. Coincident with Junenteenth, the Senate voted unanimously this week for a resolution that is similar to legislation in the House, with one significant difference: The Senate version specifically states that the resolution can't be used to support claims for reparations.

Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), lead sponsor of the resolution, said, "You wonder why we didn't do it 100 years ago."

What a stupid remark.
100-years ago, the emotional wounds were too fresh, our understanding too shallow, but our sensibilities were still sufficiently intact, to reach this point.

"It is important to have a collective response to a collective injustice,"opnined Sen. Harkin.
Or be collectively ridiculous.

Apologizing for something that happened for which no currently-living human being has any responsibility is moronic.
Slavery happened.
It was bad.
We don't do that here now.
Get over it.

You want to apologize about something that should pain the social conscience? Let’s first get rid of the silent segregation that still exists in this country today, and then apologize for how we’ve all turned a blind, winking eye to the issue of Race in these otherwise united States.

Race is still an issue in this country, whether anyone wants to admit it or not. That's why Barack Obama's election was such a big deal. Beneath that great, natural tan, he's just another politican who needs a teleprompter to effectively rally the masses. Remove the Race issue, and the Obamification of the White House is not nearly as interesting.

That Race is still such an issue is a shameful legacy for which there is likely no apology deep enough to absolve. Apology is hollow when the problem is allowed to remain.

We are all different: Red and yellow, black and white. And Brown.

The irony of this country is that our strength is rooted in diversity--but diversity should not be a cause célèbre, if that’s only as far as it goes. Why not replace diversity with inclusiveness--a collective sense that would aggregate the strengths of all, and mitigate the weaknesses we also possess?

Because we’re all only human beneath our veneers.

1 comment:

Kate said...

I see your point; it would be admirable for the Bridesmaid to rise to the occasion and find the inner supurb-ness to stand and deliver.
Having said that, have you ever been a bridesmaid? You shell out money on a dress, shoes, hair, makeup, showers, shower gift, bachelorette party, wedding gift and myriad of other costs that add up quickly. We could be talking about thousands of dollars here, if the Bride is so inclined. What's more, maids are the support system for the bride, who may well consider the bridesmaid to be her personal slave or punching bag, if she's the bridezilla type.
Maids are participating in intimate details of her life, almost as family, right down to holding up the skirt of her dress on her wedding day when she has to tinkle.
If you're a bridesmaid, you better love that Bride and really, REALLY enjoy her company on bad days.
I think Abby was right on...if this girl can't shoulder the mere thought of this role NOW, 18 months before the wedding, then she will only prove to be flake as the date nears, as pressure mounts and her discomfort becomes immense. Abby was being nice when she suggested that the Bride had few friends...the Bride could also be in the market for a royal court-sized bridal party.
You yourself pointed out the powder keg nature of modern weddings, an environment that the Bride herself has the power to diffuse but, rather, usually chooses to fuel and therefore deserves no sympathy when her own circus runs wild. I can't blame this Bridesmaid for opting out; it is a HUGE expense in time, energy, money and patience that is overblown in our society. It's a special day but, as a bride myself, I do not believe a wedding warrants asking casual acquaintances to bend over backwards emotionally to make me feel popular. bridesmaid is doing the right thing bowing out now, a choice that does not make her a low life or snake because it's a SOCIAL EVENT, not charity work.