The physical celebrations of Juneteenth and Independence Day have come and gone; however, the attacks on freedom and democracy remain prevalent. There also are herculean attacks on “truth.” Daily, we witness individuals who swore an oath to the Constitution stand and look into cameras as they attempt to defend obvious lies.

This country and society are headed in the wrong direction when men and women rather believe and defend a lie instead of standing up and defending the truth. Some seem to have become so enthralled with harmful lies that they’ve become immune to the truth.

A case in point is this: I attended a public hearing a few days ago and some of the remarks/expressions that I heard were frightening. I saw and heard individuals espouse thoughts that were harsh and filled with disdain for their neighbors, families and friends. They appeared to have regards for themselves, only.

What has happened to the doctrine of loving thy neighbor as thyself? We have people living in Galveston County who are suffering, but based on what I heard at that county meeting, suffering means absolutely nothing. The teachings of Christ have gone by the wayside, as man seems to rather serve “man” and not God.

Although Juneteenth has become a national holiday, the true adherence to the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution is still shaded by racial lines. There are those who believe that those national sacred documents are for the country as a whole. Multiracial men and women have fought and died for this democratic society, but a segregated spirit that causes men and women to hate without a cause still exists. There are those who would rather destroy our democratic institutions than to respect the phrase, “a government of the people, by the people and for the people.”

We know that the men who wrote the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution were slave owners at the time of the writings. They weren’t aware that a prophecy was being revealed within the written words, “it is God who created the Heavens, the Earth, and Men.” Therefore, when, “all men were created equal” was penned, the men and women that were in bondage were included.

However, as I write, there’s a concerted effort to deny the truth regarding American history; although, many African and Native Americans are still alive and can offer testimony to the atrocities and mistreatment leveled at the two races, specifically. I’m keenly aware that there are some whites who abhor racism and there are some African Americans who use it for chaos and profit. This is the primary reason that after the elementary schools of the former La Marque Independent School District were destroyed by Hurricane Harvey, this communities’ and districts’ unity were tested.

I’m proud that we were able to put personal and political differences aside and work together. As a result, watch this space as three new elementary schools are opening and a new junior high school is under construction in The Settlement.

The Rev. James E. Daniels is founder and chairman of the Eagles’ Nest community organization, chairman of the West End Ministers and Leaders Alliance and lives in Texas City.

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(3) comments

Charles Douglas

I knew a man once who decided he was not going to move forward in life, but instead he was going to go back and visit & reminisce about all the places he had been mistreated or treated badly in his life! He spent his whole life doing that, and when he died, he only had a legacy of despair, hate, failure, and poverty to show for his decisions!

I'm not doubting a word Reverend Daniels posted in his Op-Ed, but I will qualify what he said by offering this, many of us know personally about walking through doors with " COLORED ONLY" written across the top! I know I do! I know about having less clothes, and shoes to wear than anybody else as I navigated my way through a segregated school system prepared for me! I know about having to wear football shoes and equipment which were shipped from LaMarque High School Tigers, in LaMarque to the Lincoln High Eagles in West Texas City! I know all about that! I studied about Jim Crow, Racism, and Segregation in college in "BLACK HISTORY" courses, having experiences before and after knowing what those classes taught me! I knew that my dad had been trapped for many years in an institution ...liken onto Slavery called " Share-Cropping" in East Texas when I was young! This system was designed to keep uneducated laborers on the land that the Emancipation Proclamation had taken away... by cheating them! I learned about the plight of the Chinese and Native Americans in this nation, also!

My attitude toward all this is the same as many who traveled the roads I traveled, and that was to work hard & LOOK up & forward toward better! Dr. MLK spoke to a group of young grade school African-Americans years ago, and he admonished them with: " If it falls to you to be a street-sweeper, sweep streets like Michelangelo painted pictures, sweep streets like Beethoven wrote music, sweep streets like leotyne Price sang opera, ...sweep streets so well that the hosts of heaven will have to stop and say, here lies a great Street Sweeper, who swept his job well!"

His lesson here was (Luke 16:10)..: He who is faithful over little will be faithful over much; and he who is dishonest in little, will be dishonest in much."

I have a great grandfather lying in a grave in East Texas who was a slave. I have a grandfather lying near him who missed being a slave by a few years! I have grandchildren who are now navigating their way through life, it is their time! Who do you think I am most concerned about,..... my relatives past, or my relatives now, and in the future? That should not be hard!

Some people would not know the truth if it was starring them in the face, Pontius Pilate didn't! ( John 18:38 ) He looked Jesus in the face, and asked him, "what is truth!" Jesus is the truth!!!! It is reasonable to expect those who know not God, will by default serve the Devoyer, or the Deceiver! That means they will lie, cheat, steal, and kill if necessary just like who they serve! Jesus said in ( John 8:31-32)..." If you abide in my word you shall be my disciples." " And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you FREE!"

There is no neutral ground with God! ( Matthew 12:30 ) "He who is not with me is against me, and he who helps me gathered NOT, scatters." Lastly, I see race being used today in order to divide this nation and I don't like it ah-tall! Everything is about Slaves now, Segregation, Racism, White Kids are racist, and this and that!

These are tools of Satan used to destroy this nation! There is this thing about self responsibility, and hard work, dilengence my siblings and I were taught at an early age! My kids learned it and I suspect my grandkids are being taught the same! No I could not attend The University of Texas Longhorns, but the Mayor of Texas City did! My son was a National Football recruit, and had his pick of major Universities anywhere in this nation to play football, when I only had a couple of offers from all BLACK schools! Now that is progress and nobody is going to convince me otherwise! Therefore I am overjoyed to see where my grandkids go, and what they will do, because this I know .....Freedom, Segregation, & Jim Crow won't be obstacles like they were for my forefathers and myself! America is the greatest nation on earth BAR NONE!!!!!!

David Hardee

Charles, again your comment has relevance to the life in the lineage of every human who has ancestry where a form of subjugation was inflicted. The good reverend would serve us well if the tone of his article were not judgemental by drawing forth "we have overcome much" instead of resurrecting the shackles of ago as recriminations to denigrate their descendants today. The future has promise if we honor the struggles of the deceased and not throw their corpus on the path as a horrific obstruction to togetherness.

Charles, you deserve an invite to the revends pulpit.

David Hardee

It is automatic that one will be condemned as irreverent when criticizing a man of the cloth. But when a man of the cloth is a constant pontificator in the newspaper where his preaching is laced with judgments of the secularist, flawed humans, he is irreverent.

Church and state are like body and soul. The realm of the body/human is naturally flawed by the freedom of choice. And the reverend that intrudes on the secular/public venue deserves the same judgment that he so liberally makes about choices people make.

Leave unto Ceasar and stop your public judgments. Down your robe, mount the pulpit, pass the basket, and preach to your congregation with the intent to save their souls.

If you are a disciple of the Christian faith the life of Jesus is your model. He was a vagabond wandering in the secular world and had no church. The people came/assemble/congregated for the uplifting inspiration when - He speaks of spiritual salvation - He rendered no punishment/judgment. except when He cast out the money changers that intruded on the sanctity of the temple - He published no manifesto condemning or judging - He challenges all men including reverends to cast a stone only if they are pure. Amen.

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