American Empire, War Truth and Reconciliation

How To Behave At Funerals, Part II: A Place for Truth-Telling

Thanks to Hamil Harris at the Washington Post for more on Rev. Joseph Lowery’s remarks at Coretta King’s funeral. (See prior post on this site.)

… the Rev. Joseph E. Lowery said yesterday that his conservative critics do not understand black funerals and are seeking to insulate the president from independent views.

1. Understanding Black Funerals:

“The Republicans who are criticizing me don’t understand the [tradition] of a black funeral,” Lowery said in an interview. “At a black funeral we always celebrate the life of the deceased and take up the causes that the decedent championed. Mrs. King’s cause was peace and racial justice, and I challenged the living to do likewise.”

“Black funerals”? Any funeral is likely to move along those lines. People who object to that are just not being honest.

… conservative bloggers and pundits have railed against Lowery, saying that his comments and those of former president Jimmy Carter were out of place at what was supposed to be solemn occasion.

“We know now there were no weapons of mass destruction over there,” Lowery said during the service as Bush listened, sitting only a few feet away. “Coretta knew and we know that there are weapons of misdirection right down here.”

As if misleading us into a war is not an appropriate topic for a “solemn occasion”!

2. Protecting Bush From Truth:

But, Lowery said, the criticism reflects a feeling among Bush’s advisers and defenders that the president should not be confronted in public by people who hold opposing views — a sentiment, he said, that explains why the audience at so many of Bush’s events is so carefully screened.

This is sad as well as frightening. This man, Bush, who is charged with defending us, is literally more attentive to defending his (fragile?) ego from us and our opinions. Why is Bush so afraid of – US? Particularly of US thinking and talking?

“The problem is the Republicans always want to protect Bush,” Lowery said. “They don’t want to expose him to independent-thinking audiences. They want to shelter him from the truth.

Afraid of – Truth! Seriously. This is not a characteristic of good leadership.

3. What’s Good for the Goose …

He added: “The Republicans played politics during Reagan’s funeral. Look how political it was.”

That demonstrates our nation’s new moral rule of thumb. Whatever the behavior, IOKIYAR (“It’s OK If You Are Republican”). That is not an acceptable moral standard.

Sometimes you’ve just gotta love black preaching!

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  • Even at the cost of somebody, perhaps, finding me predictable or reiterative, heartfelt thanks for that post. Here’s such a nice piece of truth-telling (sounds a lot better than truthspeak, doesn’t it). Last night, upon reviewing in spirit my last statements on this blog, I had some misgivings at the idea of (possibly) having to answer a trying question of someone daring me to explain in straightforward language what exactly I mean by America turning into an “openly acclamatory travesty of “democracyâ€?â€?. I don’t worry any more. Rev. Lowery gave the answer, and Larry summed it up: Say IOKYAR, and all is said.

    Well, not actually ALL; for the lukewarm Rescuers are not yet within the picture. Those are the ones denouncing IOKYAR with their lips while swearing all the more holy oaths on it by their hearts – and weaving this credo solidly into the very substratum of every single thought they may conceive apart from sermons to be delivered on jubilee years and safely remote from any actual political intent. Sorry, but if anyone finds me cynical, just one last recommendation: You may teach them a new word, thouth it’ll probably surpass their intellectual scope by lightyears. The word spells: SARCASM. But please, please, never try to hold forth on the difference between sarcasm and cynicism anywhere in the open, lest such an effort will cause too many minds to boggle and ravel beyond repair. You might unwillingly facilitate the progress of people’s blithe ignorance as to that fiendishly intricate difference which lies between two words practically indistinguishable by the ring of their pronunciation: I mean the words of “president� and “king�.

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