To the Editor:
This is a time in our history when nuance defines us and causes pain, as is evident in letters written in reaction to Commissioner McKay’s request that a portion of money from a marriage license tax be given to the local Cumberland Historic Cemetery Organization.
In the Civil Rights era, racism was so blatant it didn’t take much but courage to take a stand against it, although courage was often hard to come by.
Because of the changes in our culture, old ways are reviewed and rearranged into new “bundles” of beliefs, which we often accept without thinking. We seek out those who share these belief “bundles” in our community and find comfort and fellowship there.
How can this culture be racist if our president is Afro-American? Is it immoral to abort if science defines for us that the child we carry, if to term, will be deformed and die within a half hour of delivery? Can we — so many of us broken — judge what love is, and decide who can love and whom?
When we take stands now, we would be well to start by talking with each other. If we yell a little bit, so what? Good leadership can channel that frustration. Since the request for the funds was not handled in a way that would have allowed for debate and discussion, we move to the free press.
The CHCO feels attacked and defensive. The NAACP is careful but determined: some groups which purport to be for one thing are fronts for nefarious causes.
The leaders in these two groups are capable at their very least of meeting together and working for some kind of reconciliation. If Rev. Deas and Mary Anne Eckard and Father Allister Anderson — as religious leaders in our community identified in the CHCO letter — could meet with the NAACP members, perhaps they could work to lead us away from the convenience of belief “bundles” which serve to dull our faith and thinking.
They could point us to a deeper understanding of the complex and confusing nuances of modernity.
From mistakes — both innocent and contrived — good change can come. For those of us in this community given to private prayer, let us pray for healing. For those of us not inclined to faith, let us use our thinking to further the cause of community fellowship.