Alternative to Cotton
Sen. Tom Cotton can't help but keep the state and the Republican Party in hot water as a defender of Donald Trump's new authoritarian confederacy.
Slavery was not a "necessary evil." It was just plain evil. And the history books should tell the full truth of it. That Senator Cotton would propose legislation to block The New York Times from telling the full truth tells us that he's not the right man to represent Arkansas.
Without a chance of defeating Senator Cotton in the next election, is he to be our very own necessary evil for six more years? Is Cotton's impending re-election not like the founding fathers waiting until after the Civil War to abolish the horrors of slavery, and will not someone rise up and present us with a write-in alternative, please?
My 2-year-old goldendoodle Rosie would be a better senator for our state. While Rosie's too young for the Senate and too gentle for such a dog-eat-dog place, she would serve the people of Arkansas more faithfully than Senator Cotton. If no other strong write-in candidate steps forward as an alternative to Cotton, write in Rosie when you cast your vote. This is no joke.
Haven't asked them
As Maya Angelou put it, when someone shows you who they are, believe them. They didn't believe him or them. Now we have him for a president and many of them for Congress persons.
I'm tired of white folks in places of authority and privilege telling me what Black folks mean by what they say and do. Ask them and print their answers. I'm 80. I remember that Black folks were not asked what they'd like done at Central High in 1957. They were told what they'd be allowed. That's why we're still in court about it 60 years or so later.
Have you read a list of the white folks who were prosecuted for burning Black Wall Street and killing hundreds of Blacks? How about those who did the Elaine Massacre? Or the ones who lynched and desecrated the body of Mr. Carter in Little Rock in 1927?
I seriously doubt that they haven't noticed that as a people, nor that no white was tried for it when there were photos of them at the scene. Sometimes we're not told what the powerful ones in control don't want known or admit complicity in.
Black folks have questions. Can you hear them now?
Stance not important
We can kneel in prayer to God, but we cannot kneel during a pledge to our country? If kneeling is so bad, churches and alleged Christians need to stand for all prayer.
If you are praying or pledging, your physical stance is irrelevant as long as you believe and practice the words you say in your heart and soul. The goal is the outcome of trying to be the best person you can be for the sake not only of yourself, but of others.
CHRISTY C. COKER
Support good people
When I ran for school board, I had the help of a woman who had supported candidates in the past. At some point I asked, "Why do you spend all this time helping with elections?" Her answer was instructive and formative: "I support good people."
I supported a good woman who ran for mayor. I attended candidate forums, brainstorming and planning meetings. I knocked on doors. I made calls and contacted people on social media asking them to spread the word. I donated money.
Then I stood, holding a sign reminding people to vote, while my feet froze.
Our government was not organized by a representation of the people. The greatest commonality the signers shared was a history of speaking out against unfair laws. These were the people who were heard. Those who get involved have the voice. Good people must mean representative. Then, gender, ethnicity, class and education limited participation. Today, most limitations on participation are self-imposed. Voter suppression in the form of poll closures and ID laws can be addressed when good people speak up. It is a credit to the voice of Arkansas citizens that Governor Hutchinson has authorized absentee ballot voting for anyone with covid health concerns.
Each of us doing something more than merely voting is a deeper, more powerful use of our speech. This year my husband and I, for the first time, donated and campaigned in primary elections--significantly, for different candidates. This is how a diversity of good people will make their way into public office. Support from the community, in part, is what makes them good people.
After the mayoral election, I did one more thing to support good people. I contacted her opponents to express admiration for their courage in running for office, because I support good people.
Stop playing anthem
An easy fix. Stop playing the Star Spangled Banner at sporting events. It came about in 1918 when played during the "seventh inning stretch" in the World Series. It moved to before the start of games during World War II. During its 100-year reign of signifying support of this country and its beliefs, it was a unifying song for all Americans.
Times have changed. It seems belief in the United States is no longer taught in the home or schools. So be it. Play the home team's anthem instead, or the home team's state's anthem. Every state has one. Take away from those who no longer believe in the United States of America the opportunity to show their animosity toward the country that affords them so much.
God bless America!