The run was educational.
I took Good Friday off from work. (for no particular reason other than we were given half the day off as a holiday, so I decided I wanted a whole day. So I took it.)
I spent Friday installing new brake pads on my car (this took about thirty minutes) and sanding the two tables I am building for the church sound room (which took a couple of hours).
Even though I took a nap Friday, I went to bed Friday night a bit sore and tired.
This did not bode well for the planned Saturday festivities.
Sure enough, Saturday morning I woke up still a bit sore and tired.
But a plan is a plan, and the Coach in me said, the deal was still on, let's get to it.
So I dressed for the run.
The temperature was in the mid 40's so it was the full set of double layers top and bottom (I will be SO glad when it warms up. 8-( ).
As soon as I took my first steps my left hams and glutes began mumbling about all the effort they had been through the previous day and how they needed more time off, etc.
The Coach would have none of this.
Running Central was instructed to ignore all communications from the left leg for the duration of the party.
And, wonder of wonders, after a couple of minutes in run mode, the left leg joints, muscles, ligaments and tendons all shut up and did their jobs.
Knowing I was tired from my efforts of the previous day, I was expecting some diminished performance ( speed/time, accelerated breathing, etc.), I just did not know how it would manifest itself.
Hill one went fine, though I could feel my sub-prime strength.
But my breathing remained comfortably elevated.
Hill two went similarly well, much to my surprise.
Mile two usually is uneventful (assuming the police leave me alone) and this day was no exception.
Mile three sometimes is where my weaknesses make themselves known.
But today, in spite of my cautionary expectations, I only felt a little more fatigued.
As I wound my way through the parking lots of the office center in my final quarter mile, I felt tired but not desperately so.
And then an amazing thing happened.
I forgot I was tired.
As I approached my finish line/crack I was chugging along thinking about something not related to running (I forget what), and when I came up to the line - I did not want to stop.
My time was forty-two minutes.
I was pleased and surprised.
This leads me to again consider extending my course a few more thousand feet.
Or perhaps go back to the Cotton Row course and run Bankhead hill and the roads on either side again.
As I mentioned last time, I find the statements of "Reverend" Jeremiah Wright most revealing of his theology and his political inclinations.
While I simply formulated some questions about those comments broadcast by the media last time, I will now present those statements and my comments about each of them.
It has been argued by some who seek to defend Reverend Wright, that the broadcast statements were taken out of context, one wonders how any context could change the meaning or interpretation of those words.
Judge for yosef......
Wright's comments include the following:
"The government gives them [African Americans] the drugs, builds bigger prisons, passes a three-strike law and then wants us to sing 'God Bless America.
No, no, no, not God bless America; God d*** America, that's in the Bible for killing innocent people.”
It is a statistical fact that 25 percent of all Negro men in the United States either are currently in or have been in jail.
While some percent of these people have been falsely accused, they are still significantly more prone to lawlessness than any other racial group in this country by a wide margin.
This makes them less innocent than Mr. Wright's assertion.
“God d*** America for treating our citizens as less than human.”
He is probably referring to the 3/5's compromise when the Constitution was being drafted, where slaves in the southern states were counted as 3/5 of a person for purposes of representation.
While it was a dehumanizing action, it was not the only dehumanizing act by a nation.
It was a reasonable compromise in the circumstances of the time.
Those times are long gone.
The United States has not had any slaves in over 140 years.
All Negro people in this country are protected by numerous laws and several amendments to the Constitution to ensure their “humanness” and equality with other citizens.
While some unfair and ugly things have been done to black people in this country since the freeing of the slaves, they are becoming more rare.
I suggest Reverend Wright and his sympathizers get over the civil war.
“God d*** America for as long as she acts like she is God and she is supreme."
If he does not likes the way “America” - whatever that is in his mind (the government, the white population, what?) acts, one has to ask, how should “America” act to please Reverend Wright?
And if God were to condemn America, what exactly would that accomplish?
If God were to condemn America, what would happen to Reverend Wright and his sycophants and followers?
Does Reverend Wright feel that he and his sycophants and followers are not Americans?
Does Reverend Wright feel that he and his sycophants and followers would somehow escape the condemnation of America by God?
“We Bombed Hiroshima.
We bombed Nagasaki.
We nuked far more than in New York and the pentagon, and we never batted an eye.
Yes, we did.
It should be pointed out that we were AT WAR at the time.
The Japanese had killed thousands of our men – black and white.
We were attacked first. (remember a place called Pearl Harbor?)
Is the Reverend suggesting that we not defend ourselves when attacked?
"We have supported state terrorism against the Palestinians and black South Africans and now we are indignant because the stuff we have done overseas is now brought right back into our own front yards.”
Reverend Wright has it wrong (again).
The Palestinians are not a peace-loving people.
They desire, as a stated policy, to destroy the nation of Israel and wipe it off the map.
They claim this end as a duty of their religion.
They attack the nation of Israel daily.
We support the right of a peaceful nation to defend itself against those forces which seek to destroy it.
South Africa is another story.
Segregation and discrimination were national policy for many years.
But that has changed now.
Apartheid has been over for several years.
It is time for Reverend Wright to get over this issue as well.
“America's chickens are coming home to roost."
“Jesus was a poor black man who lived in a country and who lived in a culture that was controlled by rich white people.”
Point one -
Jesus was “poor” by choice.
For most of his life he was a carpenter.
He earned a living for himself and his widowed mother. (we can assume that his brothers and sisters also contributed to the support of his mother.)
But after he began preaching, he was surrounded by people who wanted him to become king.
They were willing to fight for him to become so.
Jesus preached that we would have the poor with us ALWAYS. (Mark 14:7)
He also preached that true riches were spiritual, not material.
By that measure, Jesus was never “poor”.
Point two -
Jesus was not a “black” man.
He was Jewish, a descendant of inhabitants of the Middle East.
Jews and Arabs are not considered “black”, racially, nor do they look black.
Point three -
The Jewish nation in Jesus' time was occupied by the Romans.
Jewish society and religion were allowed to operate largely without interference by the Romans.
Some of the richest people in Jesus' time were Jews – his countrymen.
Point four -
ANY society is controlled by the “rich”.
Specifically, the richest members of that society.
It was true then, and it is true now.
“The Romans were rich.
The Romans were Italians.
Which means that they were Europeans.
Which means that they were white.
And the Romans ran everything in Jesus' country.”
Not all the Romans were rich – ask the soldiers.
Jesus told them to be content with their wages. (Luke 3:14)
No one has to be “content” with wages if they are “rich”.
The implication here is that there is something wrong with being either white or rich, or both.
"It just came to me within the past few weeks, y'all, why so many folks are hating on Barack Obama.”
Who has said or written “hateful” things about Barack Hussein Obama in the last few weeks?
“He doesn't fit the model.
He ain't white, he ain't rich, and he ain't privileged. “
Reverend Wright has his facts wrong.
Barack Hussein Obama IS rich.
He is a member of the United States Senate, one of the richest, most privileged assemblies in the world.
He is paid $165,200 per year.
I call that rich.
“Hillary fits the mold.
Europeans fit the mold, Giuliani fits the mold.
Rich white men fit the mold.“
What mold do rich black men fit?
“Hillary never had a cab whiz past her and not pick her up because her skin was the wrong color.”
Are you sure that was why the cab passed the black-skinned person?
Maybe the cab had to be somewhere to pick up someone else?
“Hillary never had to worry about being pulled over in her car as a black man driving in the wrong.
“I am sick of Negroes who just do not get it.”
What do these Negroes not “get”?
That they should hate everyone who has more material wealth than they do?
They they should envy the rich, and express this envy with insults?
That because of abuse of their ancestors, they should feel that they are owed something special by the current society/government?
“Hillary was not a black boy raised in a single parent home, Barack was.
Barack knows what it means to be a black man living in a country and a culture that is controlled by rich white people.”
Hillary grew up in a county and culture that was controlled by rich white people, too.
So did I.
Name a culture that is not controlled by rich white people, unless it is in Africa, where the culture is controlled by rich black people.
African governments are well known for their corruption and the wide disparity between the rich and poor.
Why is that?
Could it be that riches corrupt regardless of race or skin color?
If you don't like a country and culture that is controlled by rich white people, why don't you go to a country and culture that is controlled by rich black people?
Hillary can never know that.
Hillary ain't never been called a nigger.
Sticks and stones can break my bones but names can never hurt me.
“Hillary has never had her people defined as non-persons."
No, but who in this country is defined as a “non-person” now?
"Hillary ain't never had to work twice as hard just to get accepted by the rich white folk who run everything.
Or to get a passing grade when you know you are smarter than that C student sittin' in the White House.
“Oh, I'm so glad that I got a God who knows what it is to be a poor black man living in a country that is controlled by and run by rich white people.”
It seems that the implication here is that the “rich, white people” do things that are unfair to the “poor black man”.
Some questions -
Who passed the law that ended slavery?
Who passed the “war on poverty” laws?
Who passed the equal opportunity act?
Who passed the voting rights acts?
Who passed all the laws guaranteeing equality to black people?
Was it all those rich white people in the U.S. government?
“He taught me, Jesus did, how to love my enemies.”
If you love your enemies, reverend Wright, it is difficult to see it in your rhetoric.
What I see in your words is anger over past events and circumstances that no longer exist.
So why the anger if you love your enemies?
I see envy in your words against “rich white” people.
Why is that?
They are the people who are in a position to offer you a job and pay you for working.
Do you resent that?
“Jesus taught me how to love the hell out of my enemies.”
In the light of the teachings of Jesus, what exactly does this mean?
It sounds and reads like sarcasm.
If not, it would be useful to understand what you mean by this statement, and how you justify it by the teachings of the Bible.
“And not be reduced to their level of bigotry, hatred, and small-mindedness.”
Unfortunately, based on your previous statements, it appears to me that you are totally and altogether reduced to a level of bigotry, hatred, and small-mindedness that so throughly debilitates your thinking and actions that you must find it nearly impossible to function in this society.
“Hillary ain't never had her own people say she wasn't white enough.”
Okay, Hillary is not white enough.
“Jesus had his own people siding with the enemy.”
The enemy of a holy, loving God is sin, hatred, rebellion, and lies.
Which side are you on, Reverend Wright?
Are you trying to communicate the love and holiness of God to the rich white people, or are you more interested in inflaming human passion and animus against people not of your race?
Where is your message of forgiveness for past wrongs done to your people and ancestors?
Where is your message of love and restoration?
Where is your offer of understanding and dialog to those with whom you disagree?
“This is why I love Jesus, y'all.
He never let their hatred dampen his hope.”
That is because he knew who he was – the son of God.
If you are a saved person, you also are a son of God.
By the way, on your church website, nowhere does it state that you believe that Jesus Christ is the son of God.
Do you believe that Jesus is the son of God?
It should be pointed out that while these statements were being made, the audience was not silent.
Many of them were shouting in agreement.
I copied these quotes from a news article, then watched the video on uTube to verify the accuracy of the printed statements.
Corrections were made based on the video.