My recent post talked about the List wording, “…the best possible resolution to________..,” any problem situation, but I didn’t tell you that this wording arose out of a discussion about race relations in America at our July List Update Class. This turned out to be the most common social concern amongst List Alumni, so, a number of us added this wording to our Lists:
“…having the best possible resolution to race relations in the United States of America, easily and comfortably….”
In this reminder email about this Friday, I thought I would talk more about race relations, specifically the, “Black Lives Matter” movement, and tell you about what has be happening relating to it here in Ashland, Oregon. I find this such an interesting town to live in, because generally people here are quite liberal, positive, inclusive, intelligent and forward thinking.
Recently the town was abuzz though with a racist occurrence. A beautiful young African American actress is in town, along with many other African American actors and actresses. She is doing a great job of playing the Lion in “The Wiz.” Recently, though, she was approached by a young man on a bike, telling her, “You know, the KKK is still alive and well here in Ashland.” She was traumatized, as was the rest of Ashland once they heard about it.
So, soon afterwards, a rally was held on “The Bricks,” just outside of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, in support of her and all black people, and many Ashland people attended (me included.) Beside the stage, a “Black Lives Matter” poster went up, and on a close-by tree, red ribbons were tied, and a whole pad of chart paper was posted.
The rally went well, with the Chief of Police in attendance, and many representatives from Ashland’s many social groups. (Many Soroptimists were there too!)
As it turned out, though, this young man really wasn’t representative of the Ashland community at all (or was he?) It turned out, the police suspect, that he is a young homeless man, who lives in the Ashland area, and who is mentally ill. –Sigh, just another of two social issues, that maybe we can talk about wordings for this Friday.
But what I really wanted to share with you was something related that I discovered just last night. In the culturally inclusive tradition of Ashland, last night on The Bricks at the Green Show, Ashland’s Taiko Drummers gave a rousing half hour show. It just so happened, though, that the friend we were to meet, sat right beside that tree with the “Black Lives Matter” poster beside it and attached chart. They were still sitting there weeks later, and I got to read the many interesting and varied comments.
I know it’s politically incorrect to say this, but it was so enjoyable. No disrespect intended. Believe it or not, just the first page was written on: but the comments were so representative of Ashland’s great thinkers, as well as the issues and related discussion around the rest of the US. So I took the time to photograph and then write out some of the comments. Here they are below, for your reading pleasure. (Some of the punctuation and several words have changed, for clarity, and I wasn’t able to include all of the pictures, because the print was too light.*) I h0pe you find them enjoyable too.
Yes, Yes, Black Lives Matter Equally.
You bet they do!
Police lives matter too!
Freedom rings through unbanned books.
Let Freedom Ring! Let Equality Ring!
All Lives Matter—Protect The Unborn!
(And then below that:) Not the issue here!
Palestine Justice Supporting Black Lives Matter.
Yes we are ALL Family. When we hurt one, we hurt ALL!
Let the words of Malcolm X fuel our inclusive care for one another, and challenge the power structure.
High time all people in America end the horrible remains of discrimination and degradation against black people, brought to this country against their will, that slavery hath bequeathed to them.* Too many continue the onslaught. Capital follows cheap labor. Let us begin anew and create a society with really equal opportunities for jobs, housing and sharing the wealth of capitalism through a social democratic means for a just and free world.
Black lives matter! We focus on our family members who need the most protection, while acknowledging that everyone is valuable.
It is the – artists – writers, poets, actors, playwrights – those who create a world that will move us all forward in a better way to the oneness we all seek.
Black Lives Matter! All Lives Matter! Blue & Pink Lives Matter! (Women Matter) But that’s another “matter.” But there is an issue here. Black Lives MATTER!!!
Thank you all.
What will the topic of our next List Update Class be, this Fri., Aug. 26th? –Well, likely a continuation of the same, also with lots of time to spend on our own Lists: time to focus on our own needs and “resolutions,” as well as to socialize and talk about what is happening in the world.
Please come and join us, from 10 am to 3 pm. We may break for lunch at 1 pm. If you want to bring a refreshment, I’ve learned that closed containers are fine in the room. We will break for lunch at 1 pm. Apparently the Pizza Grotto is very good, with gluten free pizza and a salad bar. Also, there is the Talent Café to choose from, or we could head out to the Downtowne Coffeehouse on Talent Avenue. Please RSVP soon, however, as space truly is limited. (Fee, by donation.)
Yours gratefully, Marnie Hancock, firstname.lastname@example.org.