A talk about race

Published 11:29 am Thursday, April 30, 2015

For 90 minutes we talked about race. Calmly. Compassionately. And productively, I thought.

Faithful reader Alice Brown, a member of the Davie County chapter of the NAACP, had asked to meet with me, to look me up and down and make her own judgments.

Maybe that’s what Starbuck’s had in mind when the coffee company proposed conversations on race. What we had on Monday morning might have been even better.

I confessed to accidental racism — times when I might offend without intention. The heart may have good intentions but the head might have a screw loose. There are times when I don’t know what might offend Mrs. Brown.

We talked about old times — back when the Enterprise-Record published “Colored News.” That was an age ago.

We talked about President Obama. I don’t agree with him politically, but I must confess that he’s an excellent father, husband and example. He seems fun. I’d like to shoot hoops with him or drink a beer. But I’ve always voted for the other guy and would again.

I would like to sit around the bar with President George W. Bush and President Bill Clinton. But not Hillary Clinton. That may prove to be her undoing: She seems to be no fun.

We talked about perceptions of the newspaper in the black community. We talked about the editorial cartoons — an item that frequently offends both liberals and conservatives.

I’d like to meet with a few arch conservatives and liberals and tell them not to be afraid of conflicting ideas. Read The New York Times and Human Events. Accept the concept that you may not have all the facts yet.

It was a morning well spent.

Wallets Galore

Forbidden fruit is the sweetest. Adam and Eve were the first witnesses to that truth. Young grandson Sam, 4, is the more recent example.

While visiting us from Illinois at Easter, he spent a week trying to talk me out of my wallet, finally turning to religion, telling me God teaches us to share.

At church on Easter Sunday, a nice lady asked if I had finally given the child my wallet.

I didn’t and may have earned a reputation as the worst tightwad in America.

Nearly everyone else gave the lad a wallet.

He returned home with five.

His grandparents Carter and Brenda Robertson both gave him their wallets.  His cousin, J.T. Bumgarner, gave him a sports wallet. At the Bixby Presbyterian Church pancake breakfast, Jeanette Cook gave him a wallet almost identical to mine.

He wanted to trade for mine.

Finally, Jean Dinkins of Clemmons, one of the local leaders of the Daughters of the American Revolution, came to the office with a wallet for that poor child.

Her wallet gift is so nice I may keep it and give him mine. But my reputation would sink below tightwad to low-down skunk.

– Dwight Sparks