46 Comments

I grew up in housing projects and they were at first segregated, in SF of all places, then when I was about 10, we they were integrated, and we move to Potrero Hill. Way before that the schools were already integrated. I went to school with all colors of children, and it didn't bother any of us kids. It is true, racism, bigotry is taught. I was fortunate enough to grow up in a home, with a Southern father in SF, who would not tolerate racism. 1961 I join the military and was station in the South and I saw what my father told me I would see: 'Whites Only', 'Colored' and you could feel the tension in the air. Although I knew about, I was floored. I was equally floor when I felt that same tension when my partner and I drove around the U. S., and we both felt it in the South, it was a terrible feeling in 1993. It is up to every one of us to rid our country of racism and bigotry. no one is born with the two hates, we are taught them.

But gun violence, police violence is another story, at least I think it is, at least in part. Chief Justice Warren Burger said it best, and I am paraphrasing, the misinterpretation of the 2nd Amendment is a fraud committed on the people. We do not have the right to bear arms. This is an easy fix, but we and our elected officials have to have the will and also stop telling the same fraudulent lie. So, maybe we start by banning the manufacturing of firearms in our country. Then we have to have the will to ban mail order sale of firearms to citizens. Then we confiscate what is out there, that should not be too hard, because most of us don't own a firearm. When you unarmed citizens; the police no longer have an excuse to 'fear for their life', 'I thought he had a gun', you eliminate police officers' excuses and then we can demilitarize the police, and once again look like 'normal' police officers on the beat. OK, maybe that all would be hard, it would certainly take a lot of planning, cooperation, and tact. I don't know the answers, but I do know there was a time, when I grew up, that the police did not look like military police, you never saw a gun. And you know what you didn't hear of mass shooting every day.

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Excellent message

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When I was little in the 1950s, our town had two peace officers. They were quiet, respectable men and respected. That was before someone flooded our country with marijuana, then cocaine, then heroin...

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Here's a funny story to Cheer you Up, At 18 a friend I worked with at Children's Hospital had a toga party In Hull MA which has These HUGE houses on a cliff over the sea in hull, My friend Rosemary 15 yrs older said you can't just go in a toga: let me make you a kilt like shorts for under the toga, So We went back and forth on the length of the Toga Shorts, I wanted them over my knees she said no no the have to be above your knees: The Shorts were made fromeedseauined material, So we depart Melrose to go to Hull MA in her Mazda THEN WE ARE PULLED OVER FOR "SLIGHTLY" RUNNING A RED LIGHT, SO THE COPS COME AROUND TO THE FRONT PASSENGER SEAT SHINE A LIGHT DOWN ON ME AND I START TRYING TO PULL SHORTS DOWN OVER MY KNEES AFTER THE REFLECTION OF THE COPS FLASHLIGHT THEN THEY TOOK HER LICENSE AND WE HEARD THEM YELL "HOW OLD" SHE WAS 33 I Was 18, the cops bring her ID back and say your fine have a good party, we told them we were going to a toga party in Hull, the cops laughed their asses off when the flashlight reflected off my shorts lol THE WHOLE SITUATION WAS SUCH A RIOT but I was embarrassed the entire party having red sequined shorts AND being laughed at by police but I got over it

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Its a complex problem, I wish my town had peace officers only, my brother in law was a cop lol So My Cop Experience is far different But If I were you, comparing this to your own peace officers I can Understand The Disillusionment for All These Stressful Cop Experiences HANG IN THERE and thanks for sending me your post love peace respect

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Your writing is heartbreakingly powerful and true. Thank you for living the pain that it must take to write it.

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Well said and here's hoping it will be widely and well read.

The first step in fixing a problem or changing a habit is admitting that it exists. You have done so very eloquently and it's past time for the rest of us privileged white Americans to admit it as well.

And then do something about it.

Thank you.

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It’s hard to articulate my thoughts - all words seem hollow at this point. I’ll just say thanks so much for your thoughtful and poignant post. And your Nerd Avengers conversation today on this was great as well - I so wish that level of depth and honesty permeated all of media (and society).

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The Nerd Avengers RULES I love them!

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This is beyond brilliant and should be read more than once by every American. You deserve a Pulitzer for this one, Mary.

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Agreed

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"...surely the murder of Tyre Nichols will be enough to force the issue of reform? "

No, Ma'am, because the aim of the lynching is to force all of us - but especially those among us of color - to comply, to constantly calibrate behavioral parameters that will sustain our continued life, versus those that won't.

It's corruption of the highest degree.

We're all complicit.

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Thank you for this. Powerful, insightful, needed.

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Makes me angry and heartsick. The systemic racism that is alive and well. The idolatry of cops ..even bad cops in this country. The rising fascism ..Florida becoming the new fascist prototype .desantis a real evil masquerading his hatred under some godly ideology . His soul is dark. Yet millions who drank the trump Kool aid...still drink it. I try to imagine how a week would be as a black woman here in my little white town. Keep making us rise up Mary Trump. Thank you.

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Every morning DeSantis is in the headlines of my local newspaper. Florida is truly “Paradise Lost”.

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As someone who marched with Martin Luther King, Jr. at the Open Housing marches in Chicago in 1966 and the King organized anti-Vietnam War march also in Chicago in 1967, and someone who won a federal all white jury trial in federal court in southern Indiana against white prison guards who shot 49 Black prisoners and killed two at the Indiana Reformatory in 1969, I certainly agree with Mary about the efforts by whites to exclude Blacks and make life tough for them. But it started after the Civil War with President Johnson, who was almost impeached, and then carried on by Whites in the South undermining laws meant to protect Black people and by 1878 the abdication of US government efforts to protect Blacks in the south from violence by Whites including lynching and other heinous acts. Then the Supreme Court stepped in from 1856 to the 1940s to undermine federal laws designed to help Blacks. After Brown v Board, White Citizen Councils formed "private" schools for whites to keep Blacks out, and then George Wallace stood in the schoolhouse door to prevent Blacks from being registered, but Lyndon Johnson sent federal troops and the Assistant US Attorney General, back when we had an AG that was not perpetually asleep at the wheel, and Wallace stood aside.

The law needs to be enforced against Black Police officers in Memphis and against your Uncle, Mary, Donald Trump.

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I wonder how long it will take to integrate our society. Living in Portugal, which was the first nation to outlaw slavery in1761 (and one of the first to initiate it) , I see that color here is not such an issue as cultural differences, such as women wearing head coverings. I have been here 30 years. During that time Ive noticed that my neighbors have physical features inherited from all it's conquerers going back to the Phoenicians. But lately with the economic pressure from millions of migrants from the Middle East and Africa, Im hearing extreme Right chatter, as usual, placing blame, and picking on vulnerable people who can't fight back. Jews are reported to be leaving France, and the taxi driver I usually call made reference one day to Blacks, and Jews as undesirables. I told him I didn't like the conversation and that personality and character are more important than color or religion.

I'm not sure how the Catholic church stands on race, but it's policy on its being the only true religion never changes. In fact, the Catholic church never varies on any subject including it's superiority over civil law.

Nevertheless, physically the population has integrated so much, that there are so few truly "white" or "black" people that color doesn't seem to be much of an issue.

Since most immigrants to the USA over the last couple of hundred years have been from Central America, I would guess that they have integrated the best (Spanish language now being spoken by over 50%), and the stigma of farm laborer status has been diluted.

So I wonder if the success of integration of "Blacks" depends on numbers, their part of our population being only 13.6 percent.

Maybe there would be less racial violence if the physical melting pot got stirred up a bit, so it would be harder to pinpoint who is what color. For me, there is no such thing as purity or perfection here on Earth, and purity can itself be a flaw including skin color.

"Johann Friedrich Blumenbach (1752–1840) divided the human species into five races in 1779, later founded on crania research (description of human skulls), and called them (1793/1795): the Caucasian race (Europe, the Caucasus, Asia Minor, North Africa and West Asia)", to justify the practice of slavery. This research was debunked by new research in the 1950s and continually up to the present.

So until enough of the public is educated to scientific concepts, we will have to contend with the minority of so-called "whites" who want cheap so-called "black " labor. The question is , how long will it take to out live the Stupids who can't learn, and fix the Ignorant? How long will it take?

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Wow Great Comparison and Truth

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Mary this is THE Most Riveting and compelling newsletter you have written yet, After reading the Reckoning that read led me to read the 1619 project. There are many issues to deal with here: First: We must take qualified immunity away from police officers, between the immunity their unions and local "Good Ole Boys" the qualified immunity is the IBEAM supporting all the rampant racism and violence that makes these lawless events legal. Second, We need to end the filibuster in 2024, we should have a large enough majority based on what THE HOUSE OF HORRORS ARE DOING to the republican party Third: We must connect all these police brutality cases and create A DIRECT ACTION LAWSUIT against the City's & States that are perpetuating and allowing this situation to continue. Third: We must recreate new Civil Rights Acts and New Civil Voting Rights acts on the legislative level further restricting The Supreme Courts Ability to Poke Out The Eyes & Ears of the Civil Rights & Voting Acts rights This Time. Fourth: A new constitutional amendment regarding Civil Rights Womens Rights Minorities Rights and The Rights of The Disabled in ONE SWEEPING CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT TO SOLiDIFY THESE NEW RIGHTS Movements as a whole. Fifth: The Filibuster must come down, The Filibuster IS NOT IN OUR CONSTITUTION AND ITS THE LAST REMAINING ECHO OF JIM CROW despite Republicans attempt to let you think Its Constitutional ITS NOT, it was created by whites to control Blacks after the Civil War and Reconstruction WITHIN SENATE RULES ONLY it was created to prevent blacks from achieving equal rights equal equity and equal justice In our AMERICAN DEMOCRACY, Im praying for enough of a democratic majority in 2024 to make this happen. Mary: Thank you for this role you play in trying to Revive The Democracy the Founding Fathers Attempted to create. MARY, With your stewardship: Maybe We can achieve a better more equal democracy for all. IM ready! Your Loyal fan and supporter John Pillin

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Here's one reason nobody seems to suspect yet: Gene Sanders, a Spokane, Wash., police psychologist, estimates that up to 25 percent of all police officers in urban settings with gangs and high crime use steroids.

I'm sure you remember the horrific case of Abner Louima back in 1997, Mary. Some of those cops involved were found to be on 'roids.

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I just simply broke down and wept.

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Feb 1, 2023·edited Apr 3, 2023

Oh my gosh, I am left breathless after reading tonight's discourse! I am so grateful for the mental balm your communications provide in contrast to the relentless chaotic cacophony of what others are spewing out loud and in print!

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Thank you Mary, for this thorough and quite compelling perspective of this horrible event and the bigger picture horrible situation our society is currently stuck in - and getting worse. We really are the only country with this all too prevalent "violence first, not de-escalation" paradigm for policing. "Peace officer" has become a laughable oxymoron. How sad.

Fundamental laws have to be changed. We need to vote out all excuse-makers and vote in change-makers... but we have to reform/pack the now thoroughly tainted "theocratic-originalist-conservative" majority SCOTUS to overturn Citizens United (what a horribly antithetical name) as a start - and reform Lobbying rules/regulations/punishments.

The greater common good is too often losing simply to more $$ spent lobbying, cramming misinformation, lies, spin, etc. into all the communication channels, preying on confirmation bias and the Dunning-Kruger syndrome. Too many toxic individualists have been spawned by poor parenting and inadequate education (emotional and intellectual).

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Citizens United is another Devil Along With Abortion Disintegration, These Specific issues should be in New Constitutional Amendment I proposed as well!

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Thank you, Mary.

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