Letters to the Editor

Lives and livelihoods matter

With dismay I watched riots and cities burn during lockdown rapid “re-openings” without social distancing, justified for “public health.” With fellow Americans I’m outraged by Minneapolis officers who killed George Floyd. However, when outrage becomes anarchy, it destroys gains we’ve made in the last bastion for freedom-lovers everywhere.

Where’s outrage when disproportionally one-third of all Black babies are aborted? What’s achieved, when black-owned and white-owned businesses are destroyed? Or when buildings are plundered, homeowners threatened, and vulnerable Black neighborhoods have no police protection? How does a social worker reason with a mob or a hellbent maniac during imminent domestic violence? What’s gained, when police are paralyzed, abolished or supplanted? Or felons freed, looters allowed, bails banished while the Constitution collapses? When lawlessness reigns, societies become candidates for dictatorship. Having resided in a Marxist regime, I see this course heading toward a totalitarian police state.

Many of us lived through the turbulent 1960s, horrendous riots and assassinations. By reforms in the workplace, education and sports over 50 years we largely experienced the dream of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Many are the prominent Black leaders, wealthy entertainers and athletes. Still, the envy of the nations must do better. But not by mob-rule, intimidation, “racist” labeling, or compelling apologies for being white. Rather, as my Black neighbor advised — by dialogue, understanding and empathy. And I would add, by affirming each other as created in the “image of God.”

May God help us all value every human life and livelihood. They matter.

Tim Bickel

Cedar Rapids

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