9/2/2014 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…
“Life in this country is inherently different for white people and black people”
The words of John Stewart of the Daily Show as he skillfully ripped apart biased portions of Fox’s coverage of the Michael Brown homicide ring true as a reminder that the mar of racism is still visible on the fabric of modern North American culture.
The events on August 9, 2014 in Ferguson Missouri will forever change how Americans of all races view the police and each other. In terms of one’s view of the police, Michael Brown’s death has served as a wakeup call that it is not ok for public servants to use deadly force on unarmed assailants. While we believe the right of civilians to self-defense must be held sacred, the police, who are paid by the public to serve the public, must be held to a higher standard. The job they are asked to do is an extremely difficult one, but they are well-trained and have any number of alternatives to deadly force available to them. For all members of society, deadly force must be used as an absolute last resort, not as the deterrent of choice as it would appear to have been for the policeman on the night Mr. Brown lost his life.
Beyond the ever-present tension between the police and the public, the incident on August 9th has given pause for Americans to reflect on an issue that has been for the most part swept under the rug, racism.
While much has been said on the subject, we wish to interject an idea that we hope will impact you, not matter what color your skin may be, as much as it has impacted us: The concept of Equity
What is Equity and why is it important for understanding and removing the mar of racism from the Land of the Free? When it comes to dealing with racism, the definition of Equity is two-fold. Most white people in America understand and, in their better moments, are comfortable with the first:
1) Fairness of justice in the way people are treated
In many respects, the elevation and nearly universal recognition of this facet of the concept of Equity is the great achievement attributed to Martin Luther King, Jr. and the movement that he came to embody. It was enshrined into law in the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and impacts nearly every aspect of public life in America. For most white people, passing and observing this law was enough to rectify the problem of racism.
However, this facet of the concept of Equity is merely a first step, as it is the second definition of Equity that must be addressed by America, for indeed if we do not, there is not another nation on earth that will pay more than lip service to it. It is this second definition that most White people do not understand, and when they do, tend to become extremely uncomfortable (image the Fox anchors in Stewart’s clip dealing with this one):
2) Justice according to natural law or right, specifically, freedom from bias or favoritism
You see, once racism has been acknowledged, it demands a just response. It is not enough to simply ensure that a spirit of fairness with regards to race is carried out from this point in time forward. To leave the issue there is to wash one’s hands of all of the past injustices that have been carried out in the name of racism.
If the mar of racism is to be cleansed from the American fabric once and for all, a concerted effort must be made, at least where public policy is concerned, to make amends, to the extent possible, for past injustices that have occurred. To many, it will appear to be favoritism, and indeed it is, but as a form of favoritism has been exercised for a great deal of time already, it is only logical that it would take years of reverse favoritism to even begin to rectify the past injustices.
Followed to its logical end, this facet of the concept of equity means that people of color should be disproportionately represented in the halls of power at all levels, they should be awarded government contracts in disproportionate fashion, and should be accorded the right to provide any other favors they may see expedient at the public’s expense in the same way that white people have done for as long as forms of government in the United States have existed.
Sound absurd? It may be, but it is just. Under this second facet, it would not be out of the question for certain white people to be enslaved for two generations or more just to even the score with the descendants of those whom their ancestors systematically denied the blessings of life, liberty, and happiness.
While it is difficult to imagine these “eye for an eye” types of reparations taking place in 2014, this has been the harsh reality for people of color for most of our nation’s history. Given the history, what, then, is the appropriate method of administering Justice with regards to racism?
The full concept of Equity, and the truth that it brings to light, is what most White people do not understand.
Here at The Mint, we understand that the government can do no good, as its very nature is to raise the most corrupt elements of society to the top and to steal and misappropriate resources, for by definition, it can do nothing more.
However, within the broken apparatus of public administration lies the means to achieve the full concept of Equity with regards to racism, and as long as it is in place, it has a duty to tip the scales of justice the way of those who have been disenfranchised because of the color of their skin.
While most persons in America would nod and agree with the first facet of the concept of equity, the second and more troubling facet is what most white people fail to understand. Like most things that actually cost something, many find it difficult to embrace once they do fully understand it.
We only happened upon it by chance, and it has forever changed the way we see the renewed discussion of race in this country. For it is the only way that America will be able to say, once and for all, that its fabric is truly free of the mar of racism. America is the only place that can hope to achieve Equity in a civilized and productive manner, and come out all the stronger for having fully embraced it.
Stay tuned and Trust Jesus.
Key Indicators for September 2, 2014
Copper Price per Lb: $3.17
Oil Price per Barrel: $95.82