sam's notes

notes on government, sports and popular culture

Friday, April 22, 2005

As I've said before, time constraints have prevented me updating my blog as much as I'd like. As a result, I've held off on commenting on the recent controversy surrounding the Greensboro Truth and Reconcilation Project and the city council.

In the end I gues I don't give a crap. Why? Because nobody besides the TRP, the city council and the blogosphere does. That's politics in Guilford County. Bring up the TRC or the latest doings of county commissioners at a cookout and people will tell you they hadn't heard about it.

That said, I've coalesced my thoughts on the subject. N&R editor Allen Johnson writes, "It is still a mystery to me why the Truth and Reconciliation supporters sought the council's blessings in the first place. Was it an attempt to manipulate the council, as (Florence) Gatten charged, or a naive attempt to actually sway the council to their views?"

A little bit of both. I think what bothers most people about the TRC is the fact that it seems intent on getting the city to accept responsibility for a tragic event that happened 25 years ago. The best it could do would be an acceptance of responsibility through the city's endorsement of the TRC. It's kind of like Jeffrey MacDonald refusing to go on parole: To do so would be an implicit admission of guilt.

I think the majority of the council realized this, which is why it stuck to its guns. Now the TRC can go about its business. I have no problem with that. History is a living breathing thing, and different versions of the "truth" about our country's history are revealed every day. I would hope that whatever the TRC uncovers, it touches on the dangerous crossroad our country was at in 1979. There was an incredible void in leadership, and people obviously felt compelled to take violent means to institute change. Our country's stature was lower than it ever had been and, contrary to the views of many today, ever would be. I fully believe that, had the people not radically changed our leadership in the presidential election the following year, the U.S. was prime for an implosion.

Which is why the man we buried last June is such an important historical figure, if not the most important.


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