"TRUTH AND LOVE AND KINDNESS AND CARING WON OUT OVER HATE. IT RESTORED MY FAITH IN HUMANITY!"
TEN WAYS TO FIGHT HATE IN YOUR COMMUNITY
HATE IN AMERICA is a dreadful, daily constant. A neo-Nazi's anti Semitic rampage in Kansas that left three dead; the shooting deaths of six Sikh worshippers in Wisconsin; the murder of a gay 15-year-old student in his California classroom; and the stabbing death of a Latino immigrant in New York are not "isolated incidents." They are eruptions of a nation's intolerance.
3. SUPPORT THE VICTIMS
4. DO YOUR HOMEWORK
5. CREATE AN ALTERNATIVE
6. SPEAK UP
7. LOBBY LEADERS
8. LOOK LONG RANGE
9. TEACH TOLERANCE
10. DIG DEEP . . . WE ALL HAVE PREJUDICES!
NOT IN OUR TOWN!
Christmas was just around the corner in 1993 when, Billings, Montana, entered a white supremacist hell. Jewish graves were vandalized. Native American homes were sprayed with epithets like "Die Indian." Skinheads harassed a black church congregation. But these events received scant notice--until a 5-year-old Isaac Schnitzer's holiday peace was shattered.
On December 2, a chunk of cinder block broke his upstairs window. The window displayed a menorah, a row of candles lighted at Hanukkah. Responding police urged his other, Tammie Schnitzer, to take down all their Jewish symbols. She refused and said so boldly in a news story.
As if suddenly aware of hate in its midst, Billings responded. vigils were held. Petitions were signed. A painters' union led 100 people in repainting houses. Within days, the town erupted in menorahs--purchased at K-mart, protocopied in church offices, and printed in the Billings Gazette--displayed in thousands of windows!
Mrs. Schinitzer took her son for a ride through town to look at all the menorahs.
"Are they Jewish, too?" a wide-eyed Isaac asked.
"No," she said, "they're friends."
Rick Smith, the manager of the local sporting goods store, was so moved by events that he changed the sales pitch on his street marquee. Instead of an ad for school letter jackets, he mounted, in foot-high letters" "NOT I OUR TOWN. NO HATE. NO VIOLENCE. PEACE ON EARTH."
The marquee got national exposure, and the NOT IN OUR TOWN became a famous slogan. it went on to title a Hollywood movie, a PBS special, a school musical, and a tolerance movement in more than 30 states.
NOT IN OUR TOWN, with its forceful message to hate groups, is now spreading by the Working Group, a mon-profit production company that produced the video, Not in Our Town. Subsequent videos show what communities around the country have done to fight hate.
Margaret MacDonald was among those who ignited the anti-hate movement in Billings. Decades after the events, she still is moved.
"The story of Billings emboidies how people believe the world ought to be, " she said. "it touches on First Amendment responsibilities (and) civic responsibility; it's about multiple faiths finding ways to validate each others' liberties and freedoms. It's a transformation of violence and hate into peace-making."
What's a Hate Crime?
A HATE CRIME MUST MEET TWO CRITERIA:
1. A CRIME MUST HAPPEN, SUCH AS PHYSICAL ASSAULT, INTIMIDATION, ARSON, OR VANDALISM, AND
2. THE CRIME MUST BE MOTIVATED, IN WHOLE OR IN PART, BY BIAS.
A WORLD OF IDEAS
Pulaski, Tennessee, the birthplace of the Ku Klux Klan in 1866, closed its doors to white supremacists attempting to rally there. Racist found the town closed for business, including McDonald's, the grocery store, and Wal-Mart. "they couldn't find a place to get a hamburger or even go to the bathroom," the mayor said. In subsequent years, the Klan rally became a joke, and even the media got bored with it. "last year no one came, "the mayor said. "The year before that, the only TV was the Comedy Channel."
Five Steps for Parents
1. Examine your children's textbooks and the curricula at their schools to determine whether they are equitable and multicultural.
2. Encourage teachers and administrators to adopt diversity training and tolerance curricula, including Teaching Tolerance magazine and other diversity education materials.
3. Encourage your children to become tolerance activists. They can form harmony clubs, build multicultural peace gardens, sponsor "walk in my shoes" activities, and join study circles to interact with children of other cultures.
4. Examine the media your children consume, from internet sites to the commercials during their favorite TV shows. Stereotypes and issues of intolerance are bound to be present. Discuss these issues openly, as you would the dangers of sex and drugs.
5. Model inclusive language and behavior. Children learn from the language you use and the attitudes you model. If you demonstrate a deep respect for other cultures, races, and walks of life, most likely they will too.
PEACE--MAKE IT HAPPEN!
P.S., Iraqi forces, retake Syrian town of Mosul, in a symbolic end to ISIS! LOVE YOU!!!!!!! Good job, Iraqi! Kindness in war, two soldiers, seen, carrying old man, in a wheelchair or baby stroller, out of the wreckage, and gun fire, helping a youth, struggling to get him, to safety!
GOODNESS ALL OVER THE WORLD!
LOVE TRUMPS HATE!
KISSES, HUGS, AND LOVES!
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