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Racism at Home?

Date posted - April 29, 2014

When you picture a racist, what picture do you have in your mind? The news this week has been sobering concerning racism in the US. Cliven Bundy’s ugly words revealed his racist heart and Donald Sterling, one of the richest men in America could not stem the flow of his racist tongue. And now, right here in Sheldon Iowa, we have arrests in a racist park vandalism case.


It is difficult to identify racists. If they don’t open their mouths, we have no way to judge their hearts. As the mom of two black kids in NW Iowa, it almost makes me wish for the days that racists were easily identifiable by their white hoods.


I hope all decent people will express their disdain at such blatant racism in the nation and in our community. I hope no one will dare to make excuses for these deplorable words. I hope that others will join me in expressing that these sorts of comments are not to be sanctioned in any context. I hope that my little ones will no longer be subjected to ignorant, ridiculous comments by national figures such as Bundy and Sterling, or on park bench graffiti right here in Sheldon.

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34 Responses to “Racism at Home?”

  1. Robert says:

    Sad to say, but racism does exist, even right here in Sheldon. I grew up in Sheldon, moved away after college, and lived in Chicago and Atlanta before moving back here. Growing up in Sheldon, which was pretty much all white, I had no problems with people of any other race, but as I lived in Chicago and Atlanta, some of that changed. Every night when I got home from work, I would turn on the news and see all the news about all the violent crimes that happened each day, about 99 percent of the time commited by blacks. In Atlanta, I watched our predominately white, “A” rated school district slip down to a “C” when they started busing in kids from predominately black neighborhoods. As a result of our school district’s rating being lowered, we saw our property values decline and more and more blacks moved into our neighborhood. Our near picture perfect neighborhood started slipping away and it slipped away real fast. Our new neighborhood residents didn’t care less about taking care of their homes or their lawns. They would rather mow over a soda can than to pick it up first. Many of our new black neighbors didn’t work, drove fancy cars, had designer clothes, and openly bragged about how they beat the system. They’re kids walked around the neighborhood with their pants hanging below their butts. They littered the streets and showed no respect for their neighbors. As a result of all these things I mentioned, I must admit, I felt some hatred towards the black race. I knew that was wrong, and I hated that feeling, so I decided to pack up and move my family out of that enviroment. Each day, I remind myself to form my opinion of someone based on their character and not by the color of their skin.

  2. Ignorance Bliss says:

    “racists were easily identifiable by their white hoods” – oh nice, another “only white people are racists” mentality!

    • Lee Ann says:

      We would be lucky if the great majority of racists DID wear white hoods. They’d be easier to identify. However, probably 99.9% of all racists have never worn hoods. They are in every ethnic group and color. We can only go by the way they act and the things they say.

  3. Please watch this video, to help shine a little light on how the media loves to make a villian aka Cliven Bundy.
    Not defending him, but we too need to be careful not to judge other until we hear the whole story.

    • Don says:

      Obviously speaking is not this mans skill, raising cows is. Pretty sure what he meant was the government is working to enslave people much worse than previously done. Previously it was done out right and in the open, now it is done covertly, subconsciously, through government programs and subsidies that intentionally hold people back and keep them down.

      • Lee Ann says:

        I have to ask, Don, and respectfully, a question I have had for quite some time. Why does the conservative people believe that government programs and assistance hold people back and keep them down? Free health care frees people to stop worrying about bankruptcy and pre existing conditions and whether or not they can get health care if they lose their job or open a business.

        Assistance keeps them down by providing a safety net for families with children that otherwise would be malnourished and living on the streets? They will fare better by these programs being available. Sure, there are people that beat the system. But there are also a whole lot of people that are kept from extreme poverty and homelessness, especially for all those children.

        People felt the same about medicare and social security, medicare helps seniors and the disabled, it doesn’t have anything to do with freedom or ensuring life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Its not a crutch. People do not stay on medicare because they are held down by it .

        I am honestly wondering this question. Hold them back and keep them down from what? These are protections that are there for the people in poverty. If a government program of Pell grants helps someone go to college, how is that holding them back? just a question that I have always thought about.

        • Don says:

          When a person becomes dependent on anything or anyone, that person becomes weak, lazy, and easily subdued. When a person realizes the reward one feels when everything they have, they have worked hard for and earned, it instills a certain pride, strength, and independence. Assistance = Reliance = Control. Like an animal.
          As someone who took advantage of government assistance, I can witness. I lived off food stamps for 2 years. The longer I was in it, the less I cared about being better. I kept my mediocre job, never sought to further my education, or add new skills to my pool. Needless to say I woke up, got some books, and climbed out of that hole to independence. That is was living in America is all about. One could claim the assistance helped me over a hump. It was not help. I used the system, looking back I know exactly what I did. It is supposed to help people over small humps, but the majority stay down in that hole. Sad.

          • Lee Ann says:

            I used to live in the Southern Tier of New York (the toe), and that is called the rust belt of New York. There is some generational welfare families there, no jobs, no transportation, no businesses, no decent vehicles, no hope. so there is always going to be some generational welfare and some people that take advantage of what they can.

            However, I still believe that helping someone with a good safety net, health care, WIC, school lunches, etc. is not going to cause any complacency or laziness or dependency. Everyone I knew in that area would have taken a job in a second. The safety net isn’t enough to keep someone complacent and satisfied. Its not enough. Its not a good life for your family, its not enough to make a standard of living that is good enough. Everyone of those people hated the situation they were in and if lucky enough to get moved, took a job right away, instead of staying on welfare.

            In this economy where there are 3 people applying for every job, there is no choice but use assistance, for many people. But nobody wants to stay on welfare if there are decent jobs around. And its important that our children in this country have access to decent food and shelter. Without the safety net, they would be homeless living in a box.

            I still fail to see how getting this assistance to keep one healthy and alive causes any complacency or laziness. You go to the Southern Tier of New York, open a business and see how many hundreds of people would be standing in line for a job.

        • Don says:

          So youre saying because people cant find job assistance is the answer? That’s giving up.
          Assistance has it’s place to get people over small humps, then get them off assistance. The majority have and will abuse it. They will stay on it an never get off it, and the rest of society is brought down because of it.
          I have no problem helping those in need but I refuse to help those that simply don’t care to help themselves.
          I have no problem giving to those in true need and doing it of my own accord. What your government has done is to force me to help those who do not need.
          Most of what you said about that area of new york needs more to fix it than assistance. According to your demo party jobs are up! And forgive me but if people want out they can get out. Go somewhere else. Cut them off and you will be surprised at the survivability of people.

  4. Robert says:

    Yes, racists come in many colors, even in black. Living in Chicago, I discovered that that even in one’s own race, their was discrimination and hatred. In the black community, there seemed to be a hatred between the blacks that live in the ghettos and didn’t work and the blacks that worked hard and made a good living. Some of the hard working folks were accused of turning against their own race, “trying to be white”. How stupid is that?

    In Chicago and Atlanta, it seemed that the blacks were always up in your face about racism and discrimination. Whites were not supposed to discriminate against blacks, but yet the blacks could have their openly all-black universities. They could have college scholarships that only go to black students. They had all black cable networks, black art museums, and numerous black celebrations. Could you only imagine the uproar Jesse Jackson or Reverend Sharples would cause if someone decided to open a white art museum, or wanted to have a white history celebration, an all-white college, or offer a scholarship only available to white kids?

    In both Chicago and Atlanta, it got sickening that every time a black person got killed by a white person, people were calling it a racist act. Blacks killed blacks all the time and you never heard anything about it, but the one time a black person would get killed by a white person, Jesse Jackson, Reverend Sharples, and all kinds of black leaders would be on the news babbling on and getting the whole black community all worked up, even in cases where the black person that got killed got killed only because he or she was trying to rob a convenience store or trying to break into someone’s house and it had absolutely nothing to do with race.

    In my opinion, people like Jesse Jackson and Reverend Sharples, who portray that they are fighting discrimination and hatred, are the biggest problems. Both of these guys make tons of money off writing books and speaking engagements. If discrimination and problems between the races went away, they wouldn’t make any money. That’s why when an act of racial hatred does happen, they jump all over it, to get the black community all worked up again. That means more money in their pockets.

  5. vroc4507 says:

    Racism is an ugly, ugly thing whether it be spoken, insinuated, or exhibited but’s it’s almost always the Caucasians that get a finger pointed at them for not being more tolerant of another race of people. What I believe to be worse is “reverse racism”. As a Caucasian, I work in a predominantly Hispanic workplace. While I work with some great people and get along quite well with the majority of these people there is definitely a few of those who fairly openly exhibit racism towards Caucasians. Along with that, what about BET, (Black Entertainment Television), Black Pride Week, the United Negro College Fund, just to name a few?? How far do you think we’d get if a group of Caucasians suggested White Pride Week or White Entertainment Television? We’d be labeled as White Supremacists or Nazi’s and there’d be no end to the uprising caused by such suggestions!

    Please remember that racism is a double edged sword and no one or no one group of people are exempt from the fall out caused by those narrow minded people no matter what their race may be. To paraphrase a very famous book, “judge not, lest ye be judged.”

    • Rainbow says:

      Has any one noticed, the words racism have been more implicated in our daily lives from our Government, and Government should not be in sighting racism, they should be able to abide and be respectful of our constitutional and human rights our forefathers fought for. We have good and bad in all races. To notice this is not racism, it is a fact of life. The best we can do is not let racial infractions escalate in our communities, this would be sad if we can not remember how it use to be in the 50’s and past and learn from that.

  6. Weighing In says:

    Racism is real, and is indescribably ugly. As mentioned above, the constant playing of the “race card” only serves to desensitize people when true racism rears it’s ugly, ignorant head. The Jesse Jacksons and Al Sharptons of the world actually perpetuate racism by crying wolf over and over again. Sadly, such people are willing to exploit their fellow man for personal and financial gain, pitting one segment of society against another.

    I believe we have come a long way in this country toward eradicating racism in the relatively short time since I was a child half a century ago. The days of segregated drinking fountains and lunch counters are thankfully over, for example.

    Someone much smarter than I once said, “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.” We may be a lot closer to the realization of Dr. King’s dream than we were at the time of his tragic death, but we still have a long way to go.

  7. Robert says:

    I’d like to hear from Harriet Olson to see if Walnut Grove had any problems with racism when all the black kids from the blind school moved into town.

    • Lee Ann says:

      If you remember one of the earlier shows on “Little House on the Prairie”, Laura Ingalls found there was a little black boy hiding out in their barn. He was supposedly from Estherville, and had run away. So Laura kept sneaking him food, etc. My Mom laughed and said there had never been a black boy in Estherville in the past. Estherville was 100% German, Swedish, Norwegian, Dutch, Irish, English, etc.

      My Mom had never seen an African American until she went to Waterloo to live with her sister, before the war.

    • Harriet Oleson says:

      I must say that myself and some of the other mothers of school children were upset – because even though these kids were blind – they still took our son’s spots on the basketball and kitten ball teams.

      • Lee Ann says:

        Did they put little beepers on the ring of the basket? haha

        • Harriet Oleson says:

          Are you making fun of these people???? I know a good attorney in New Ulm who defended Mr. Edwards after he was accused of window peeping……

          • Lee Ann says:

            Me? Oh no, I have a niece that would have gone to the Blind school back in those days. She probably wouldn’t be playing basketball, but nowadays, she keeps busy building facebook business pages.

          • Pastafarian says:

            Chill out, Harriot. It was a joke. I know a couple of blind people who would have laughed at that. You don’t need to get offended for them, especially if it’s a little friendly banter.

  8. Concerned says:

    This guy was having a private conversation with his girlfriend, who recorded the call, which I believe is illegal. All chaos breaks loose. I smell a set up, blackmail, and everyone acting on emotion. Was it against the law if he did say those words? If his players want to quit the team, they have free will to do so. I have quit a few jobs myself because of ignorant bosses and I am the better for it. I didn’t force the guy to sell his business and sue him. I moved on. Is this not a free country of free speech? Would I work for the jerk? No! I’m sure I would have had issues long before this became public and found a different job.

    • guest says:

      It is a free country and you can say what ever you want to. But when you employ a large percentage of minority’s and your fan base is minority’s. It was not the smartest thing to say in private or public. You are correct every team member should walk away and watch the guy go belly up.

    • Lee Ann says:

      I recognize that this guy was a misogynistic racist bass t*rd. And I agree with those that say he should have been called on his racist views a long time ago, instead of waiting for this phone conversation.

      But he was talking in a private phone conversation with his ex girlfriend. Its not illegal to tape a phone call as long as one of the two know it is taped. So since she knew and was taping the call, its legal in most states.

      Free speech allows some people to say some very bad things about others. Some of the things Ted Nugent said about Hillary Clinton and President Obama was probably worse than this conversation. Free speech has really taken a beating in the last 6 years. But we still allow free speech. Still, this guy is a bad guy. but in a private phone call, I am concerned that all this is happening, just because of his racist views.

      I really believe that the situation was that they say he has been very ill for quite some time. And his girlfriend is bringing her African American friends to the games. All he wants is for her to quit bringing them to games and quit putting instagram pix out. I wonder if she is flaunting her “friends” in games and pictures, even tho she is also part AA. So she is just twisting the knife, to get even with him. Its a big mess, for sure.

      • Fisherman says:

        You are a racist also when you call him a name like that. There should not be any questionaires with any race questions either. We are all the same, what makes us different is the attitude we have.

        • guest says:

          If his comments were not racist what were they?

        • Pastafarian says:

          “We are all the same”…
          … Or we can all face the fact that we are all different… and that’s o.k. too! This conversation shouldn’t just be about race, but of gender, sexual orientation, and social economic status. We all need to learn how to live and let live. Take pride in what makes you different, just don’t rub it in other people’s faces.

    • ?! says:

      The first amendment grants you the right to free speech without government interference. It does not mean you can spout off your opinion without sanction from others, such as an employer, the NBA league, or a television network, as was the case with Duck Dynasty.

  9. guest says:

    Robert you sound racist. I also moved back to Sheldon. I lived in a city where there were White, Black and Hispanic gangs. One thing I learned there are good and bad people of every color and race. I have many friends of different race. I do not see there skin color I see another human that bleeds the same red blood that I bleed.

  10. Claire says:

    I hear the words, “I am not a racist but….” and then I hear a racist comment. Often, the only way to know if a person is racist or not is by what he or she says. If you are not a racist, don’t say racist things and definitely don’t deface public property with racist graffiti.

  11. O.D.B says:

    Donald Sterling makes racist comments and gets banned for life. Al Sharpton makes racist comments and gets his own TV show.

    • Pastafarian says:

      THIS IS AMERICA! Stop using logic and rational thinking to make a point.

    • Clover says:

      O.D.B. Thank you! You were able to describe in in one sentence the problem with race relations today. If everyone was held to the same standard animosity between races would be reduced substantially.

      • Harriet Oleson says:

        How right you are – why I remember one time Harold Van Steeukelma called Nels a stupid Norsky and all Stella Vander Pollema did was laugh……

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