As we listen to John Stossel and Rand Paul, does our nation seem in reverse?
by Charlie Leck
Do these guys have no appreciation for the Woolworth sit-ins? Do they not understand the gentle defiance that took place and the victory won?
Here’s a friendly historical reminder of just the surface of the event. Woolworth, all over the south, in times before 1964, operated what we called, back in those days, Five and Dime Stores. Negroes (using the terminology of the time) were allowed to shop in those stores all they wanted. They could wander the aisles and spend their money on hair barrettes, birthday cards, brooms and dustpans; however, they could not go to the popular dining counters to have a mid-morning doughnut, a BLT for lunch or an afternoon coffee break. They could order items from the famous Woolworth lunch counters, but they couldn’t sit there; they could order take-away food only.
Today, Rand Paul, the Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate in Kentucky, and news commentator (FOX), John Stossel, think that is just and the law banning it never should have been passed. Stossel is calling for its repeal.
Are we going crazy in America? Or, are we just blind to the truths about justice and injustice? Are we willing to defend a constitution with violence, hatred and guns without really understanding it?
"It’s time now to repeal that part of the law,” Stoessel said, “because private businesses ought to get to discriminate. And I won’t ever go to a place that’s racist and I will tell everybody else not to and I’ll speak against them. But it should be their right to be racist."
Again, to review history ever so lightly, looking back, the following paragraph from an article written by William D. Snider appeared in the Greensboro (NC) News and Record in May, 1983. Snider, a white man, had been the editor of the antecedents of that newspaper during those Woolworth sit-ins of 1960 in Greensboro.
“It was a matter of trying to do what was possible. In the long run the gallantry of those who sat in and the scope of the injustices touched the consciences of the kings. But the falloff in business, the indications that aroused petitioners simply wouldn’t go away, changed minds too. The doors were thrown open. Soon everyone wondered how they had remained closed so long. Especially the children and grandchildren: “Grand-daddy, do you mean black people couldn’t go in a restaurant and get a cup of coffee?” [Read the entire article by Snider!]
The world is spinning backwards – and that ain’t good!