Wednesday, July 12, 2006

American Vision

To me it would seem that a basic Vision for America would be Freedom.

It is amazing to me how much time these ultra right wing "Christian" nationalists like the Holy Rev. Rick Scarborough can spend involving themselves in the lives of others who may not even need or want their intervention and concern. Once upon a time people who called themselves "conservative" also were advocates of less government, and the freedoms (for the most part) to do as you please. Not anymore. Busybodies like the Concerned Women of America, the Eagle Forums Phyllis Schafley (Chairman of Homophobic Parents of America), James Kennedy, James Dobson, Ann Coulter, Peggy Folger, and Rick Scarborough want to be so involved in everyone's business all the time. It is not my Vision for America, or the average citizens American Vision.

The Gospel of Hate agenda pushes time munching issues like flag burning, the Ten Commandments, and prayer in school. Not important fellas considering we are spending a billion dollars a week over in Iraq.

These guys are very narrow minded Christian Dominionists with no tolerance for any other religion. They are convinced that America should not be one where Church and State are separate. Many advocate a future in which Gay and Lesbians citizens are put in jail or put to death. How very Hitler of them, isn't it? These guys must have a different Bible in the house than what we had in ours.

To Rick Scarborgh and the ultra right wing subset of Christian leaders:

Would you agree now to call a truce and agree not to get into my business if I stay out of yours? All I really want in this World is to be left the fuk alone. I am happy that our God made me gay. I am not changing or want to change. I demand the freedom to live in an America which has promised "Liberty and Justice for All" I see no asterick after the word "All" guys - no phrase in little letters in the footnote which reads "Unless You are Homosexual." My gayness is not my choice. I am the expert on that guys, not you. Your Ex Gay camps and seminars and therapies are nothing short of fraudulent. I realize the dilemna you have with what to do with these folks other than pray they do not end up on the cover of Time magazine as did John Paulk. They are sort of like a tired group of brainwashed zombies or carnival show freaks that won't go away.

It is amazing the amount of advice you have for families considering the horrific divorce rate in America and sad state of some of your own. Please just stop saying that Gay people will ruin the institution of marriage. You straight folks have already done an excellent job of that. My wish is that you might stay out of my house considering the sad shape of your own. Our family has alot of Pride and a good reason to be proud. In the early eighties the Religious Right's response to the AIDS crisis was usually non existant or hostile so we organized and took care of our own.

If the World is ending soon why don't you guys you should probably seek refuge in your stockpiled 20,000 seat mega churches and pray until year knees wear out. Before you head for the bunker, please grab the entire Fred Phelps Church Family of Topeka, Kansas. Fred may be a closeted old gay pervert but we are most happy to have you take him with you. We'll stay here and organize a fabulous party and invite all of our allies and friends.

Here are a few people are groups with a real American Vision based on Christian views you might be interested in checking out Holy Rev. Rick Scarborough and friends. Every one of these groups are the real HEROS of God.

  1. United Church of Christ and their Still Speaking Campaign Be sure to search for an download the commercial "All the People" --it is beautiful.
  2. Soulforce founded by Jerry Falwell's biographer Mel White. Amazing stuff thank you Mel.
  3. This campaign is financed by a a brilliant man named Mitchell Gold. Mr. Gold is the founder of Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams Furniture in North Carolina. I think it is safe to assume that Gold isn't too concerned that you might boycott his company. (if you already haven't) Seymour Floor Mirrors just don't go with framed copies of the ten commandments.

"Mitchell Gold, the founder of Faith In America, delivered an inspiring message. Gold, who is Jewish, traced the roots of religion-based bigotry, in part by retracing his own life experiences. His first experience with religion-based bigotry came as a 5th grader living in Trenton, New Jersey in a predominantly Christian neighborhood. When he rode his bicycle over to the person he considered his best friend one day and discovered a birthday party taking place in his honor, he asked of his friend why he had not been invited. His friend explained to him that he couldn't invite him because he was Jewish. He recounted his second childhood experience when a neighborhood kid he considered a friend ordered him off his property. When he asked why, the boy told him that the nuns at the Catholic Church he had attended told him bad things about Jews that day in school" - - website

For additional info on the inclusive and GLBT friendly segements of these deonominations check out their websites at: Dignity USA (Catholic)

To find a GLBT friendly Church in you community check out

Rick Scarborough please leave us alone. Your Vision for America is not my American Vision.


Laura Rider (site below is not my personal site!) said...

The poor guy seems to be so desperate for National press attention. Too bad there is already a right wing "Scarborough" One is enough, especially based on some of the comments I have hear this guy make regarding Tom Delay. Let's face it people - Tom Delay is the most embarrasing politico ever to represent Texas in Congress. He has ruined the Republican Party here. Ya'll check out Nick Lampson who is running for the Tx 22 seat - he is a fine honest family man of good Christian morals, unlike the Hatchett man Tom Delay (or whatever they called him)

If you need help packing up the trailer Tom, we' ll pitch in to help get you out of Texas ASAP. Thanks for nothing you thief.

BlackmanfromJasperTexas said...

Out at the Jasper (my hometown, I live in Houston now) cemetary in town the racist assholes continue to deface the James Byrd, Jr. gravesite. The KKK grand wizard has made frequent trips to the gravesite and defaced it with his own glossy photograph in full gear.

I like this site and agree that all these old racist white guys need to die off before we get there in ragards to diversity and acceptance in our Country. Thanks.

Blacks in these small cities need to get more involved in politics to run against these KKK guys with the same views as this Scarborough guy from Lufkin. Then some of the fears that the poor black folks have that live in the community might go away.

You guys be sure to look into the murders of young black men that have occurred in East Texas city jails, it is quite frightening to me.

It makes me just furious.

East Texas racism subtle but persistent
MINEOLA - Against steep odds, Hulbert Perkins made the big score.

He became a prosperous black businessman in a region of Texas long
known as Ku Klux Klan country, where entrenched racism has been
embodied in all-white towns, segregated churches, militia camps,
Confederate flags, cross-burnings and occasional brutality.

In the beginning of his effort - 13 years ago - that history followed
daily. He had difficulty getting a business loan and leasing a
building. When he finally opened his heavy equipment and tool rental
shop, he frequently was targeted by vandals.

But as time passed, his company grew and he was accepted into the
business community and given a seat on the Chamber of Commerce board of
directors. By 1997, it seemed to Perkins that Mineola, 15 miles north
of Tyler, had finally laid to rest the remnants of the Old South for
which East Texas is storied.

Then he tried to buy a house.

"I figured I could afford a $150,000 house," he says. "The trouble was,
all those houses were in the richest white neighborhoods. Nobody would
sell to me."

Some sellers threatened to call the police when he approached them, but
he persisted in shopping until an encounter with one homeowner nearly
ended in a fight.

"My wife was crying and I was upset," he says. "I decided the best
thing for me was to move on."

At the age of 52, he left his son in charge of Perkins Rent-All and
moved to Shreveport, La., where he opened a branch of the business and
bought a $200,000 house in an integrated neighborhood.

Perkins seems not to have been embittered by the incident. "There are
just some things you have to deal with," he says.

In the months since James Byrd Jr. was dragged to death by three white
men on a rural byway outside of Jasper, attention has been focused on
the savage face of the racism that has persevered in East Texas since
before the Civil War. But, to many blacks, the lingering odor of the
Old South is often more noxious in its subtler forms.

The manner of Byrd 's slaying was loathsome. So was that of Loyal
Garner, beaten to death while in police custody in Hemphill in 1987. So
was that of Kenneth Simpson, beaten to death while in police custody in
Cleveland in 1988.

But the racism blacks "have to deal with" is more immediate and
persistent, shadowing their daily lives like an old hog dog. The
occasional violence, black leaders say, is the tip that proves the
presence of the larger iceberg, the presence of a climate in which
violence is easily spawned.

Of Byrd 's slaying, Parisice Robinson, chairman of Texas political
activities for the NAACP, asked: "What does this say about the climate
of Jasper? The climate, in some ways, has to contribute to that."

A part of that "climate" followed Byrd to the grave. He was buried in
the section of the local cemetery where only blacks are buried.

The racial atmosphere of East Texas is not just about one town, and
certainly not just about Jasper, which, from outward clues, is among
the more enlightened and integrated communities in a region with a
history of stubborn resistance to cultural change. Whites are a narrow
majority, but blacks have held important positions - mayor, police
chief, hospital administrator, school superintendent - and most
citizens will argue, on first meeting, that the town is a rural
microcosm of the New South ideal.

However, the day that the KKK and the New Black Panthers demonstrated
in Jasper a week after Byrd 's funeral, the NAACP held an alternative
community meeting for blacks and, Robinson says, fragments of the
iceberg surfaced. Death may have been a grim backdrop, but those who
attended talked about issues closer to home - lack of trust in the
judicial system, wariness of law enforcement, the discrimination by
banks in granting credit and setting interest rates (higher for blacks,
they said).

"One woman said she tried to get a small business loan and the
collateral requirement was so high that she couldn't possibly meet it.
If she had that much collateral she wouldn't need the loan," Robinson

Atrocities spark outrage and oratory, but the more commonplace forms of
bigotry often pass in silence, not from fear of violence, but of other
forms of retribution.

Recently, the Tyler chapter of the NAACP received a phone call from a
woman complaining about the treatment of blacks in Mineola. To Ernest
Deckard, the chapter president, the call was telling, and not just for
its content. Specifically, the caller grumbled about an employer who
refused to allow a black woman to take off work, on her lunch hour, to
attend the funeral of her mother.

In the catalog of grievances that reach Deckard's desk, it may have
been a minor entry, but he found it significant for another reason: It
was placed by a white woman because, he believes, the victim was too
intimidated to raise her own voice. "You still have that silence," he
says. "Blacks are still scared to speak up."

It is hard to find blacks anywhere in East Texas who dispute that. Says
a retired schoolteacher in Center: "Things aren't too bad . . . as long
as you stay in your place."

The range of consequences for leaving "your place," they know, is
broad. James Byrd left his when he accepted a ride in the back of the
wrong pickup truck, just as Hulbert Perkins left his when he went
house-hunting in an expensive, white neighborhood.

Dealing with daily nuances and subtleties of racism is frustrating,
some experts say, because the issues no longer concern civil rights,
but mere civility. Last week's tepid report of President Clinton's race
advisory board revealed the difficulty of addressing racism in its
present forms. After a year of study and stormy dialogue, the panel
proposed little in the way of new initiatives. Changing attitudes is
tougher than changing laws.

"The question is, does the civil rights movement have a role in solving
those things?" asks Mark Briskman, the Dallas regional director of the
Anti-Defamation League. "Probably not."

That movement brought legal change, but stalled out at the level of
reforming attitudes, of eradicating the notion of racial inferiority
that was the rationale for slavery and the century of segregation that
followed its abolition. Neither the government nor the civil rights
movement could deliver tolerance or acceptance, Briskman says.

"That was an unrealistic expectation from the start," he says. "That is
a job for community leadership and education. Business leadership has
to play a key role."

But in many small communities, civic and business leadership are
captives of economics, not sociology, and economies are often spare
enough to discourage activism.

In Center, a poultry, timber and wood-processing town (population
4,900) in Shelby County on the fringe of the Sabine National Forest,
the economics and culture are typical of the region. More people are
employed by the local Wal-Mart (135) than by the county government
(105). Blacks make up more than 30 percent of the population and work
mainly at unskilled and low-paying jobs slaughtering chickens for
Tyson/Holly Farms or processing timber for Bruce Hardwood Floors.

Except for two mortuaries, the only black-owned businesses are barber
shops, gas stations and beer joints. There are no black doctors or
lawyers in Center, and the local newspapers present images of a
virtually all-white community. (No blacks were shown in full-page photo
layouts of the local What-A-Melon Festival and the Independence Day
celebration this summer.)

The town has not had a municipal swimming pool for many years and
efforts by private investors to operate one have failed. The reasons
may have been economic, but it is widely perceived in the black
community that whites didn't want an integrated pool in their
community. The last privately operated pool opened a few years ago but
stayed in business only a short time.

"(The owner) was told that if he wanted to get along with the white
community, he would close that pool," says Gretchen McNealy, a
schoolteacher and one of Center's two black city council members.

That is not a difficult perception to form in a town where racial
divisions extend to the grave.

A call to City Hall to inquire about cemeteries drew this response from
a woman who answered the phone: "We have two - one white one and one
black one." Both are in the traditional black section of town, just off
Martin Luther King Boulevard.

"I've been here 50 years and I don't guess I've ever been into that
cemetery," says Clyde Lister, a black mortician whose funeral home,
Hicks Mortuary, is three blocks from Fairview Cemetery, the white one.
"I don't know that it's something that's enforced. Maybe no blacks ever
tried to get in there."

Neighborhood integration has occurred with some resistance, local
residents say, and church leaders have attempted, with mixed success,
to erase deeply etched racial lines.

The mostly white Central Baptist Church sends a bus through black
neighborhoods on Sunday mornings to deliver black children to its
services and when the black Bennett Baptist Church just outside of town
collapsed three years ago, white volunteers came to help rebuild it and
white businessmen gave money to help cover the cost.

To the Rev. Wilburt Martin, Bennett Baptist's pastor, it was evidence
of the progress the town had made in purging long-standing bigotry. It
also fortified his belief that it is the responsibility of the church -
not the government or the schools or the civil rights movement - to
sway hearts and minds.

"The burden to stamp out hatred and malice rests in the pulpit," he
says. "It's the only thing we've got left."

Last year, however, he, like Hulbert Perkins, encountered the racial
undertow that tugs against the current of progress. However
well-meaning they are, ministers face limits in the presence of their

A white Baptist preacher in Center confided to him last year that the
subject of integrated worship came up recently at his church.

"He told me there was discussion of what they would do if a black
family showed up on Sunday morning," Martin says. "The consensus was
that they would hold a benediction, turn out the lights and all go

In an effort at unity it is not uncommon for pastors of one race to
share their pulpits with ministers of the other. Martin received such
an invitation from a white minister last November and he accepted.

"He told me to just conduct the same kind of service I would at my
church," he says. "He called me back the next day and said he had
informed his deacons about the arrangements and they told him he was
out of his mind."

The invitation was withdrawn.

"Dear God, place the spirit of the Antichrist under the foot of Jesus.
Forgive the white church in Texas for its sins."

With that opening prayer at a Republican convention in Fort Worth
shortly after the slaying of James Byrd , the Rev. Charles Burchett
attracted widespread attention to himself, but it was the continuation
of a message he has been preaching throughout his life.

For 20 years, the white pastor has led the First Baptist Church of
Kirbyville in Jasper County, and his stands on racism have occasionally
alienated members of his congregation.

Several years ago, a black family began attending his church regularly.
After a few weeks, Burchett was visited by a man who said he had been
sent by a white family to deliver a message.

"Until it (integrated worship) stops, we are not coming back," the
message said.

"OK," Burchett said, "give them this message for me: Never set foot on
our property again."

Over the years, his church membership has dwindled from about 250 to 70
or fewer, but Burchett, a soft-spoken 49-year-old, doesn't waffle on
the subject of church bigotry.

"Many white men in churches have a subconscious, low-key racist
attitude in their hearts," he says. "They don't express it like they
used to, in the '30s and '40s and '50s, but it is in their hearts and
God looks at the heart. The under-the-table racism is there."

Those who have remained in Burchett's church are supportive of his
position, but in his corner of the state, he and his followers are a

A month after Byrd 's death, Burchett attended a fellowship luncheon
for pastors in Jasper and Newton counties. Informally, the pastors
swapped stories of how they had dealt with the incident in their
services the Sunday after the slaying, which occurred in early June.
Only Burchett had made it the topic of his sermon. Most of the others
mentioned it in passing and "everyone got in trouble to some degree."

One minister said a man approached him as he was leaving the sanctuary
and said he agreed with the sentiment, "but we don't want any of them
coming to our church."

One young pastor, Burchett said, touched on the killing lightly, enough
to acknowledge that it had occurred and to point out that "God has
shown that he desires justice in the legal system."

"That very day," Burchett says, "a committee of church members was
formed. They went to the deacons and asked them to fire the pastor."

Though it is less frightening than cross-burnings or parades of hooded
Klansmen - neither of which has disappeared from the East Texas
landscape - the "under-the-table racism" may be more harmful, Burchett
believes. The Klan is the ugly face of racism - more and more the
jester face. In the church, it hides behind righteousness and

"What you have in East Texas is a contradiction in terms of the races
coming together," says William Hale, director of the Texas Commission
on Human Rights. "Some are working hard to bring them together and some
are adamantly opposed to it.

"There are six or seven white supremacist organizations in Texas -
Klan, militia, Nazi, Skinheads, et cetera. They have 3 ,000 to 5,000
members and 20,000 to 30,000 sympathizers. Most of them are in East

Lawsuits and prosecutions have taken a toll on many KKK activities, but
the fact that the Klan still finds a home in East Texas is revealing to
Hale and other monitors of hate crimes. The organization's presence
suggests an environment, he says, in which whites are most likely to
"dehumanize blacks," a psychological warp that justifies bigotry and
makes violence easier.

The three defendants in the Byrd slaying, he says, are motivated by
hate and their own kind of fear.

"They are as poor as church mice. They have no respect. Their
opportunities are zero," Hale says. "The only thing they've got going
for them is that they're white."

In their minds that makes them better than blacks, but they are
confronted daily with the economic reality that many blacks are more
successful and prosperous, he says.

"That made them kill," he said.

By Hale's accounting, there could be as many as 30,000 others of like
mind - anonymous Klan sympathizers who never don the robes or parade in
public - living in East Texas. Rather than show themselves with the
grotesqueness of Byrd 's killers, they keep the Old South alive in
furtive ways.

The morning after Byrd was slain, some residents of Zavalla, 35 miles
northeast of Jasper, awoke to find racial slurs painted on the highway
that runs through town. Painted by whom?

"The white supremacists," shrugs a local businessman. The graffiti was
quickly removed.

On the same day, farther up the highway in Poynor, a young man walked
into the General Store Cafe wearing a KKK T-shirt and "smarting off"
about the Jasper crime, says Marie Wellesley, a waitress. When he tried
to go into the kitchen to harass a black cook, the owner of the cafe
ordered him to leave.

He left the premises, but blacks in East Texas know something that
frightens them. They know he didn't go

Brought to you by the