Misfits Abound

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April 21, 2021- The events of yesterday call to mind several aphorisms of my youth: “Two wrongs don’t make a right.”; “People living in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones”; “The pot shouldn’t call the kettle black”; “What! Cast your finger at another? Behold, three fingers are pointing back at you.”

I thought of these, primarily as there were references to yesterday’s verdict, in Minnesota vs. Derrick Chauvin, as “mob justice”. Seems to me, there were such instances of mob justice in the cases of Emmitt Till, in the trial of the Mississippi sheriff’s posse (1965), and in the Central Park jogger.

Chauvin could have been railroaded, but he wasn’t. The crowd that gathered and yelled, outside the courthouse, could have intimidated the jury, but the jurors were not aware of them. This case, if there were to be an appeal, would have to be shown to have been influenced by the protestors in general and Maxine Waters in particular. Thus far, the walls of the courthouse have not been shown to have let the sound outside permeate the actual courtroom or the jury facilities.

While none of that excuses the pandemonium outside, the parallels between it and the all-too-common lynchings, which took place for over a century, ring a bit hollow. I daresay that, had there been no lynchings, there would likely not have been the welling up of anger among people of colour; there would have been no build-up of smugness, leading to the “gladiator” mentality that has led to excessive force ( in which none of the police officers of my hometown, in the days of my youth, conservatives to a one, would ever have indulged); there would not have resulted in tit-for-tat shouting matches between progressives and conservatives, in cities across the country.

It was the original presumption of superiority, among the de facto aristocracy, that led to the Civil War, to Jim Crow laws and, in our time, to the mass attempts to shrink-wrap the voting laws of various states. Misfits abound, and they are not necessarily those protesting outside the courthouses.

The 2018 Road, Day 27:The Flow of Kindred Souls

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June 21, 2018, Hemingway, SC-

I did accomplish a goal of three years’ running:  A simple dinner with a young woman who is like a daughter to me.  C and I met up at Jenna’s Cafe, Virginia Beach, after I negotiated a busy, but peaceful causeway from Williamsburg to V.B., via Norfolk.

After a couple hours of encouragement from me, it was time for her to head back home and prepare for another day’s work.  She has the wherewithal to go far in her field, and to continue doing a fine job with her children.

I found a reasonable motel in Newport News and rested well, preparing for a southward journey.   My next goal would be Louis Gregory Baha’i Institute, Hemingway.  The center is used for spiritual education and gatherings. It is named for an early African-American Baha’i, who was a prominent attorney.  He chose to move to the South, in the midst of the Jim Crow era, and whilst abiding by the laws of the time, he worked behind the scenes to gradually ease the discrimination, which hobbled oppressed and oppressor, alike.

On this summer solstice, I chose to bypass Richmond, and drove a straight shot through North Carolina, to which I will return, next week. A leisurely drive into South Carolina’s pine woods brought me to LGBI,

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES just in time to meet the caretaker, before he closed up for the night.G generously gave me accommodations for the night, for which I offered a nominal contribution, this being a place that operates on a shoestring budget. LGBI was established in 1972, to assist the large number of people in northeastern South Carolina, who had shown interest in the Baha’i Faith.

Here are some scenes from around the small campus. The first three are from the Main Hall.  The patchwork quilt was made by junior youth, ages 11-14.

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Mr. Gregory is shown below, with his English-born wife, Louisa.  Theirs was one of the first interracial marriages performed legally in the United States.

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After settling into my night’s lodging, I made a visit to downtown Hemingway, for dinner, finding the lovely and welcoming Fish Net Seafood Market.

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Across the street from LGBI is a Baha’i- affiliated radio station, named-what else: WLGI!

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I find my accommodations for the night quite refreshing, and another unfinished goal from 2007 is realized.

NEXT:  Return to Greenville