I have already written a column on this issue for my LaPlante's Rants weekly newspaper column. Which week it will appear in the local paper is not known, since this week's column was not published and next week's appeared in its place.
I was at this month's town council meeting Tuesday night. I thought about writing this yesterday, but decided to spend time with the wife instead. In today's Selma News, there is a story about the meeting and the public forum that happens each month. This month, there was a hot topic and a lot of speakers. Two convenience stores in Selma, The Brotherhood Market and The Lighthouse are being taken to court by the town over the public nuisance ordinance violations. There are a lot of police visits to each store to deal with unruly people, loiterers, and drug users and dealers.
I normally encourage people to attend town council meetings. Quite honestly, there are people that I wish would not go to some meetings. That was the case Tuesday night. Why? Because they are minorities or had an opinion? Heck, no. Because they were rude and obnoxious. Some people came forward and gave passionate speeches claiming that it is a disservice to the community to shut down the stores, that they need a store withing easy walking distance, and that we as a community are all responsible for what happens at the store properties.
Some speakers even tossed out some ideas I consider just plain stupidity. First, it is not my fault that there are drug users, dealers, or rowdy patrons at the stores. Yes, the stores are in a predominantly Black area of town. Ergo, most of their customers are Black. I don't care what color skin they have. I do care about their behavior. It is not my or anyone else's fault that these people exhibit no self control or discipline. If anything, liberalism has allowed parents to abrogate their personal responsibilities and parenthood that leads to no control over youth.
Another issue I want to blast is the idea that this whole action is racially motivated. Again, it has nothing to do with the fact that the offenders that are found at these stores are Black. Note that I don't refer to them as "African-American" or any other hyphenated term. I refuse to do so. One woman, Sylvia Cox, tried to turn this into an issue of race.
Ms. Cox is a racist woman who is outspoken about her beliefs. She is blatantly racist, being a Black woman who takes every opportunity to cry racism, although it is actually her own racism in action. She went off about how she is worked up about the upcoming Martin Luther King Jr. "holiday", the "years of oppression of her people", and now the town is trying to shut down Black owned and patronized businesses.
Let me make this abundantly clear. Ms. Cox, this has nothing to do with racism. I personally do not like the idea of government shutting down any legal business, especially something as simple and legal as a convenience store. However, it is "your people" that are exhibiting BAD BEHAVIOR and creating a nuisance. I don't care what their color, ethnicity, creed, or heritage happens to be. Bad behavior is bad behavior. If the behavior is predominantly exhibited by people of your race and chosen culture, then that is a problem with your people, not with the town government, community, or white folks. Your emotional and irrational thought process is in itself racism. I have had enough of people like yourself claiming to be a victim of racism every time something happens either that you don't like or to someone else who happens to be Negro.
People like Sylvia Cox decry how her people are treated yet do nothing to change the behavior of her own people. It is not being part of the solution, it is being a part of the problem. Black people don't behave badly because of their race, no more than Caucasians behave badly because they are white. It is because they have evil in their hearts and their own families have enabled that behavior.
Another problem is that such people generally tend to vote for liberal candidates for government representatives. These blind people can not see that liberalism is contributing to their own plight. Instead of accepting responsibility for their own success and behavior, they rely upon big government to give them entitlements and a measure of self worth. Instead of grabbing on to the American dream and pursuing success, they accept victimhood status by their own choosing. It is ironic that the liberalism that has assisted in creating the very hoodlums that created this nuisance situation with The Brotherhood Market is hurting the owners of the store. These store owners, Mr. and Mrs. Alwahishi, have worked hard to bring themselves out of the normal paradigm of being Black victims and instead are trying to make something of themselves. They work long, hard hours, yet the victim, poverty minded, and morally bankrupt members of their own culture are killing their business.
It is sad that the Black community can not realize that liberalism and Democrats are the very ones keeping them in bondage. High tax rates, government hand outs, and the endorsement of abrogation of self reliance have all been devastating to the Black community. Now the town is being blamed for attempting to clean up the bad behavior of those same people.
It is people like Sylvia Cox who worship MLK, think that the world owes her people a living, and should take care of them that are the problem. It is further ironic that such people think that the government should do more to help their people, then turn around and cry racism when a government has to take action to clean up the mess created by her people because her people won't take care of the problems themselves and responsibility for their own behavior.
Another hugely ironic thing at the council meeting was that one young Black woman who lectured the audience and council on how she confronts bad behavior wherever she finds it in public; that she thinks everyone should take the responsibility to correct and confront people who act badly, was an unruly and disrespectful person herself. She was seated in the same row I was. During the course of the meeting, there were a lot of people having private conversations, being disruptive and loud, playing with cell phones, and even shouting outbursts during the meeting. She was one of the worst offenders, along with her companions. How can someone be so hypocritical by pointing her finger at everyone there and admonish them to confront bad behavior yet exhibit the very behavior she decries? What a great amount of disrespect.
For the record, I am a big supporter of equal rights, regardless of race or sex. I believe in equality of the races, but NOT in equality of cultures. Evil is as evil does. Stupid is as stupid does. Even Forrest Gump got that right. As much as I disagree with many things spoken by Martin Luther King, Jr., the one statement that rings true is "I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character." Read the whole "I Have A Dream Speech" for more. I don't agree with everything he said and find some contradictions in his paradigm, but I do agree with his dream of being judged by one's character, regardless of skin color.
People who cry racism over every situation in which someone's character, or lack thereof, has created trouble basically spits on Martin Luther King's memory and what he actually tried to stand for. His agenda and name have been hijacked. Oddly enough, the worst offenders are the ones who evoke his name, his memory, and worship him while at the same time tarnish the legacy. Sylvia Cox did this Tuesday night. Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton do this regularly. What a shame.
One other wild theory voiced at the meeting was that the move to close the stores was nothing more than a plot to take the properties and give them to developers under the guise of declaring them as public nuisances. That is certainly a creative conspiracy theory.
What was lacking from most speakers at the forum were the key issues of 1. Are the businesses indeed a nuisance to the general public? 2. Is it the role and responsibility of government to interfere with private, legal businesses? Those are the emotion free, logical topics that need to be addressed. Once those are addressed, then we can answer 3. Should the business owners be responsible for nuisance abatement? 4. If the business owners do not eliminate the continuing nuisance status, should they be shut down in order to eliminate said nuisances?
I believe that the business owners should be held to the expectation that they will take responsibility for what happens on their property. One can not abrogate the responsibility of ensuring that such activities do not occur, especially on a regular, continued basis on their property. However, I am also of the opinion that personal property and freedom to operate a business should not be flippantly abridged.