”I have to tell you Obamacare is, really I think, the worst thing that’s happened in this nation since slavery.”….Ben Carson speaking at the Tea Party’s Voter Values Summit, 10/11/13
“Dr. Ben Carson joins FOX News…”
First a confession, I bear some responsibility here. I just hope that on the Day of Judgment God will give partial credit for good intentions. For many years I purchased thousands (yes, literally thou$and$) of copies of Dr. Carson’s auto-biography: Gifted Hands. I also raised funds through private donors to bring Dr. Carson to NYC (along with his wife) to speak to students who could now see and touch the person who was the subject of that inspirational book they just read. This was long before Dr. Carson was nationally famous; and long before he became the colored darling of the rabid and racist Tea-Party. I did so back then in the spirit of offering students the opportunity to see the possibility of success at the end of a challenging childhood; to see a real life “over-coming”; to see how a once struggling student could through hard work become a high achiever in a Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) career path. His life story was in many ways the central story of my educational philosophy: Our nation is at its worst; and we are collectively hurt, when we waste, and lose the badly needed talents of bright and creative Black, Latino and poor students of any color. He was very much our STEM champion; and his accomplishments made the students proud. Now pride is very good when it is good; but when it is bad, it is very bad. As a youngster attending Sunday school I had many thoughts about the weekly lessons (I would keep my thoughts to myself until I reached the high school level, where we had more thoughtful discussions). But I wondered in my earlier grades why “Pride” was a sin. Everything (including my cherished dictionary); at home parental “directives”, and in the school environment, suggested that pride was something positive, and something we should strive for and keep. It was only later when I expanded my reading list to include:
The Maxwell Leadership Bible
Smith’s Bible Dictionary
Charles F. Pfeiffer: Bible Dictionary and Concordance
Xavier Leon-Dufour: Dictionary of Biblical Theology
Hodge: Systematic Theology
The sermons of Gardner C. Taylor; and the theological writings of people like: Buber, Maritain, Merton, Thurman and Tillich.
Did I come to a better understanding of the serious danger and trap of “pride”. The problem with pride is that it can become the worst type of idol worship; where you move God off of a place of praise and worship, and replace Him with yourself. Perhaps Dr. Carson got lost somewhere in the “hoopla” of congratulations and adulation that was directed toward him over the years; the financial rewards as his legendary achievements grew in public and media recognition. I know that the person I met in the 1990’s was not the mean-spirited regurgitator of Tea-Party talking points of racial denunciation and hate that I see today. When did he decided to cease to want to be an inspiration, a healer; and instead seek to be a central character in the Tea-Party’s dismissive, delegitimizing and despiteous treatment of our nation’s first Black President. In part it is driven by an insane logic by so-called Black conservatives to prove their loyalty to the right-wing cause by out ‘raceing’ the racist. Messer’s Thomas (Judge), Scott (U.S. Senator), West (fortunately former congressman), et al; are driven to extreme pronouncements of disrespect toward Mr. Obama if only to prove that they need not even maintain the simple act of respecting the “office of the Presidency”; no they must leave no doubt in the demented (Jim DeMinted) minds of their Tea-Party masters that they are in any way influenced by their own Black, or any reality. But they must go further; they are required to disrespect all of Black America. Beyond medical school; it is hard to believe that anyone that attended any school beyond the 5th or 6th grade could believe that the horrible institution of slavery could in any way resemble the Affordable Care Act (ACA) or “Obamcare”. And nowhere in Dr. Carson’s biography does he mention that he missed the entire high school course in American history. I would have to believe that a person of Dr. Carson’s academic ability is simply being consciously intellectually dishonest; this racist derogatory assertion seeks to not only insult and diminish Black Americans who are presently living; but also all in the past who lived, suffered and died under that brutal and dehumanizing system. To compare a plan that offers people the equality of health insurance, to a system that offered Black People equality with the animals on the plantation, is beyond offensive, and sense. For sure FOX News is where he belongs; and one could only wonder what will be his response when he finally realizes that his FOX handlers, the Tea-Partiers who applauded his self-degrading and disgraceful comments, reveal that they see no difference between Mr. Obama and Mr. Carson; President of the United States or Neurosurgeon; the Tea-Partiers look upon both of you as 3/5 of a man.