Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

February 17, 2014

Feb. 17, 2014: Letters to the editor

Kokomo Tribune

---- — Racial journalism and the Indy Star

What if the featured columnist for The Indianapolis Star is wrong that Western civilization can be explicated through the historical lens of Selma, Ala., circa 1965? What if there is a difference between behavior and skin pigment?

The columnist was so outraged that a group of black ministers would speak out against same-sex marriage that she interrupted her vacation to write a column labeling them “hypocrites.” Here is her reasoning, which in effect carried the day in the Indiana Senate last week:

• Racists opposed black-white marriages during the civil rights struggle.

• Blacks (and politicians) who don’t want to be called names by big-city columnists would be smart to support same-sex marriages today.

But what if being morally or even viscerally uncomfortable with any of the 50 self-identified sexual behaviors now recognized by Facebook is something different than treating another person as subhuman solely because of the arbitrary shading of their skin? That would mean Clarence Thomas, Thomas Sowell and other eminent black thinkers are right that we have become a society dangerously myopic on the issue of race.

It is a position addressed by Tom Huston, an Indianapolis attorney, in the upcoming issue of The Indiana Policy Review. An excerpt:

“For progressives of every hue, the distance that blacks have come does not appear as impressive as the distance they have yet to go, and, as the historian Alexis de Tocqueville would have predicted, resentment of the vestiges of racial discrimination has increased exponentially in proportion to the decrease in the equality gap. Thus, there is no armistice, no peace, only escalating conflict on an expanded front. In this new struggle, which is about equalitarianism, not equality, long-time alliances have been severed, old positions have been abandoned, the appeal to conscience has yielded to the claim of victimhood, and intimidation has been substituted for persuasion. Positions have hardened, rhetoric has become shrill and argument has given way to assertion. It has gotten ugly, and anyone who says so is dismissed as a bigot.”

Another contributor, Dr. Timothy Shutt, suggests the viewpoint the Star discovers as “outrageous” is hardly new and not emanating solely from either Selma, Ala., or the same-sex marriage debate of the Indiana Legislature:

“All cultures I have ever heard of are to varying degrees chauvinistic, if not always racist (sometimes, in more or less ethnically homogeneous regions, that is not really an option). Indeed, I have read that, according to comparative linguists, the most common word for ‘others,’ the most common word for those who are not ‘Hellenes’ or ‘human beings’ or whatever, when one considers the whole array of known languages, reduces not, as we might expect, to ‘barbarians’ or ‘enemies,’ but rather — viscerally and dismissively enough — to ‘the stinkers.’ A revealing construction, if not, on reflection, entirely surprising. All cultures think they’re the best. Or all cultures I’ve ever heard of. Including our own — even in its most recent, most progressive incarnations.”

That sorry and ancient inclination, that assumption that one’s own people are best, can be found in the fading journalistic culture that produced the shallowness we see in The Indianapolis Star.

Craig Ladwig

Fort Wayne

Consider with care when waiving rights

The most recent ordinance adoption with regards to wind farms has provided the citizens of Tipton County a small increase in the protection of our health and safety. Most specifically is the increase in setbacks of turbines from residences. This area in particular is the most damaging to industrial wind companies, and it is precisely this topic within the ordinance that may bring representatives of industrial wind companies to your door.

The offer will be cash for your signature. Your signature will waive your rights to health and safety and bring an industrial wind turbine closer to you and possibly on top of your property line.

1 Timothy 9,10 says, “Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.”

I urge everyone to consider with great care the decision you will be making and its ramifications, should you sign.

Andy Wyant