August 23, 2009

August 23, 2009
African American Assaulted at Town Hall Meeting

Welcome to another day in my life. Today is Sunday and we are almost through another weekend. I hope you are having a safe and great one so far.

Today was a typical day for me. After doing my workout (today was bicep and back day) and then my protein shakes, it was time to get the ball on the roll. Now my workouts have increased to three sets of each exercise and four exercises per muscle group.

But I would like to talk about something more serious. I was amazed there has not been more uproar about something I read about an African American being attacked and assaulted at a town hall meeting.

On the evening of August 6, 2009, Kenneth Gladney was attacked outside a town hall meeting hosted by Democratic Congressmen Russ Carnahan. Kenneth Gladney was handing out flags emblazoned with the traditional phrase “Don’t Tread on Me” when he was attacked by members of the Service Employees International Union. In an official statement, Gladney’s attorney David Brown stated:

Kenneth was attacked on the evening of August 6, 2009 at Rep. Russ Carnahan’s town hall meeting in South St. Louis County. I was at the town hall meeting as well and witnessed the events leading up to the attack of Kenneth. Kenneth was approached by an SEIU representative as Kenneth was handing out “Don’t Tread on Me” flags to other conservatives. The SEIU representative demanded to know why a black man was handing out these flags. The SEIU member used a racial slur against Kenneth, then punched him in the face. Kenneth fell to the ground. Another SEIU member yelled racial epithets at Kenneth as he kicked him in the head and back. Kenneth was also brutally attacked by one other male SEIU member and an unidentified woman. The three men were clearly SEIU members, as they were wearing T-shirts with the SEIU logo.

Kenneth was beaten badly. One assailant fled on foot; three others were arrested. Kenneth was admitted to St. John’s Mercy Medical Center emergency room, where he was treated for his numerous injuries. Kenneth was merely expressing his freedom of speech by handing out the flags. In fact, he merely asked people as they exited the town hall meeting whether they would like a flag. He in no way provoked any argument or altercation, as evidenced by the fact that three assailants were arrested.

The interesting part of this story is the fact that Gladney is an African American and a conservative. Where is the outrage in the black community over a black man being attacked by union members? Is the incident somehow acceptable since one of the assailants was also an African American? Where is the President stating that members of SEIU acted “stupidly?” Most recently, America followed the arrest of Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates by Cambridge police Sgt. James Crowly. Many thought the arrest was racially motivated, including President Obama. When the facts set the record straight, both parties were invited to the White House for a beer.

In the St. Louis incident, Kenneth Gladney didn’t do anything to provoke his attackers besides handing out small flags. One of the attackers allegedly wanted to know why a black man was handing out these flags. Is there some unwritten rule that African Americans can’t speak out against the President, or stand up for the principles they believe in without being assaulted? The problem with racism in America today is that there are so many nuances that leave one analyzing each incident to determine whether or not a racist act took place. It is hard to imagine anything more racist than a black man being beat down by multiple men using racial epithets without any sort of provocation. Racism is an evil that should be confronted on an equal playing field without discrimination.

Those are my thoughts, what about yours? Drop me a line and let me know.

Until we meet again; here's wishing you health, hope and happiness.

big bear hug,

Daddy Dab