Presidential 101

New Ground

Personal log, 201703.6

I have returned from laying Papa Cisco to rest. My brother stayed behind to tend to our mother for a few additional days. We had a week of remembrance, but very few tears. The last eighteen months had not been kind; the last two weeks unkinder still. It is a terrible thing to pray for a release that takes a loved one away forever, but if it had been Papa’s call to make, this outcome is the call he would have made.

The truth is, Papa was a comedian of sorts; he enjoyed making helping people and making them happy. He did a LOT of that; his memorial brought the largest turnout in recent memory according to the Minister; a testament, he says, to the type of man Papa was.

There’s a certain expectation among the Cisco clan, even (and especially) in times such as these. I literally have a lifetime of memories and instructions to carry our legacy forward, and as the eldest son it is a matter of personal honor that I do so. Mama is holding up well; having gone through my own loss not so very long ago, it will be my task to help her find her way if need be, as she did for me. However, she is both stronger and better prepared for this than I was; I fully expect that she will be more worried for us than the other way around.

I am sad that Papa is not here, yet grateful that he is with Mrs. Cisco now; they became fast friends over the years, and the thought of them together watching over the rest of us gives me comfort.

End log.

He Has Shown The Way

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President Barack Obama, Congressman John Lewis, and President George W. Bush on the Edmund Pettus Bridge during commemoration ceremonies on March 8, 2015.

John Lewis is a personal hero of mine, having risked (and very nearly sacrificed) his life so that other lives could be better. Esquire ran an article in which Lewis speaks on a subject he knows all too well – the dangers inherent in men like Donald Trump:

“When I see the people that react to Donald Trump’s words at those rallies, I see the same look in their eyes that I saw [in the eyes of Sheriff Clark and his posse]—a look that says, ‘you’re not a part of us, you’re not a part of the American family, you come from someplace else.’ When Trump talks about building a wall, to lock certain individuals out, people rallied. They screamed and yelled. It reminded me of some of the rallies that I saw on television for [infamous racist/segregationist Alabama governor] George Wallace during the ’60s. It makes me somewhat sad. I thought for many, many years that our country had become much more hopeful, much more optimistic, and we had come to a place where we saw unbelievable changes. I’ve said over and over again that we have witnessed what I like to call a nonviolent revolution in America during the last 50 years, a revolution of values, a revolution of ideas. I think the Trump campaign is trying to take us back to another place, another time, and we’ve come so far, made so much progress, I don’t think we can afford to go back…”

The entire article (which includes excerpts from Lewis’ graphic novel) is worth a read. In fact, it should be required reading for every school in America, as well as a certain incoming administration.

Unrest

C’mon Charlotte, we’re better than this.

Image: Protests Break Out In Charlotte After Police Shooting

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Burning things down won’t undo the shooting, won’t bring Keith Scott back to his family, and won’t make things any better for any of the rest of us. We desperately need calmer heads to prevail, and an actual dialogue to start AND BE MAINTAINED.

Yes, it’s hard. No, it’s not fair. But it must happen or nothing will be solved.

So That’s What It Took