Today, most of us are under stress between the pandemic and demonstrations. Though we only have control of a small portion of our world, together we have control over a much larger portion. If we feel stressed, then those in law enforcement and peaceful demonstrations are in deeper stress. Both have fear for their lives from fanatics and the criminals who take advantage of situations. Each need reassurances from time to time that they are doing quality jobs.
Unless you have lived outside of your small community, you have little idea about the issues of peaceful demonstrators. I’ve lived where Blacks stepped into the street when I walked by. No one should have to do that. The ironic part is I am a Native American, but look white so my people have been equally discriminated against. Prejudice is human. We learn very young what we prefer and don’t change our minds unless it is brought to our attention. All prejudices are not bad. I am glad when I walk a street alone at night, I am more aware of my surroundings and am very suspicious. What we have to deal with is when our prejudices are not reasonable.
We are fortunate in Jasper County. Our law enforcement is way ahead of the average in dealing with any prejudice they might have and acting as the professionals they are. Take time to show them your appreciation. We had a peaceful demonstration here in Newton. If you know one of them take time to tell them you are listening. If we don’t reach out and touch the lives of others, we won’t have a quality law enforcement because they will need to leave their jobs to protect themselves and their families. If we who protest don’t define what needs to be changed and leave the past in the past, we can’t go forward. I am not responsible for the wrongs of my ancestors and I feel for the wrongs done them, but I cannot move forward if I don’t listen and if I’m not listened to.
I am personally tired of the media showing all the wrongs done and few of the rights. I’m tired of people expecting every act of an officer to be bad. Review the whole picture and encourage others to do so and rid yourself of unreasonable prejudices. It is an ongoing process.