We Hear You: What Listening to Each Other Might Achieve

Editor’s note: Welcome to the 100th edition of “We Hear You,” where we publish your takes on the policy issues The Daily Signal covers. Thank you for making this feature one of our most popular. And don’t forget to write us at [email protected]Ken McIntyre

Dear Daily Signal: Thanks for Rob Bluey’s interview with Black
Lives Matter activist Hawk Newsome (“This
Black Lives Matter Activist Rallied With Trump Supporters. Find Out What
Motivates Hawk Newsome
“).

It’s about time someone reached out and focused on what unites us. Reaching out creates bonds and decreases hate, and most importantly, helps all of us focus on politicians and hold them to account. We should be initiating these opportunities.

I spent many years leading a
nonprofit, The Food Project, which trains and places teens and young adults at
the center of creating sustainable, local food systems.

At its heart is bringing teens and
young adults together from low income, mostly minority urban communities with
suburban, mostly white, middle class and wealthy communities. The teens and
young adults learn how to work across race and class and also navigate the
urban and suburban cultural divide.

Powerful relationships across
differences blossom because we provide structured opportunities in safe spaces
for individuals to share and listen to each other’s personal stories.

It’s on that level of sharing deeply
personal experiences, and seeing that in spite of vast differences, basic
values are held in common. That’s when minds and hearts are changed.—Pat Gray, Lincoln,
Mass.

***

What a terrific interview with Hawk
Newsome. Thank you so much to Rob Bluey for doing that and sharing it. That is
important communication between the two.

I’ve been involved with the Texas
Republican Party as a grassroots volunteer since the early 1990s. I served on
the State Republican Executive Committee during the first decade of this
century and eventually became vice chairman of the state party from 2010-2014.

After reading the book “Team of
Rivals,” I began researching why black Americans left the GOP. It’s been
eye-opening. I’ve given several talks on it and am working on a book.
Republican groups have been very interested in the topic.

While researching, I came across
accounts of lynching in my own town back in the 1920s. Granted, Republicans
were working to end lynching, but regardless, I think some acknowledgement and
shared grief needs to happen about this terrible history if healing is ever to
come. But that’s another topic.

I appreciated hearing Mr. Newsome’s
thoughts about the Confederate statues as well as police behavior. Such a good
discussion. I hope to meet Mr. Newsome some day.—Melinda Fredricks, Conroe, Texas

***

Thank you so much for the interview with Hawk Newsome. We can’t be afraid to listen and talk. Regular media won’t do it; they need to have the deck “stacked.”

I appreciate hearing this young man. He
needs to be heard. Please do followups. —Catherine Anderson, Walla Walla, Wash.

***

This is the kind of work that The Heritage Foundation should be doing a lot more of.

I think we all know black Americans
have been used by the Democrats for far too long. Heritage should also be
working with President Trump, who gets it, to help them. —John Olofson

***

This is a wonderful interview with Hawk Newsome.

It’s helpful to see how this man
thinks instead of all of the stereotypes we see in mainstream news and blogs—on
both sides. 

We need more understanding of our
common humanity. Please do more of these interviews—they will help heal the
division and save our beloved nation.—Mary-Jo Schumburg

***

I’m a regular listener to and reader of The Daily Signal and am a supporter of The Heritage Foundation. I seldom have concerns about Heritage publications.

I appreciated many aspects of Rob
Bluey’s interview of Hawk Newsome. I was disappointed that he did not ask Newsome
to share how, as an avowed devout Christian, he differentiates between two
sinful activities he discussed.

Newsome appreciates and defends the
lifestyle of gay and transgender people, but cannot tolerate Trump’s known
adulteries.

Trump is an adulterer. He has admitted
that. Many people we all know have been involved in the sin of adultery. Some
still are, it is a lifestyle for them, and some have turned away from it as a
moral choice.

A Bible believer cannot deny that
adultery is a sin. We also cannot deny that God will forgive a repentant
adulterer or adulteress. He does not condone a lifestyle of adultery.

The sins of gay and trans lifestyles
are also sins against God. He created our genders and ordained marriage. He
intends for these sexual and spiritual relationships to be as he prescribed. He
also chose the male and female roles in his creation and is abundantly clear
that rebelling against him in this area is sinful.

He will forgive any repentant sexual
deviate the same as he will forgive a repentant adulterer or adulteress, like
King David or the woman caught in adultery and brought before Jesus to judge.
He does not condone a lifestyle of sexual deviancy rebelling against his
design.

Newsome was very clear that he
condones the sexual sins of devoted sexual deviates, but not an adulterer who may,
or may not, have changed his ways.

The organization One America, which he
seems to appreciate, also mixes in hate-Trump rhetoric in the effort to support
all immigrants. They make no distinction between legal and illegal immigrants.
Another double standard.

I believe you have a responsibility to lead discussions to seek a clear stand on double standards such as we hear in this interview. Thank you for what you do. Please don’t let political correctness corrupt it.—Bob Fuller, Bella Vista, Ark.

***

Thanks for the interview with Hank Newsome. I’m a conservative, but I’m also a Christian, and believe that compassion is required of those who follow Christ.

For this reason, I support border
security, but I also support those who seek refuge and a better life in our
country.

God has blessed us with the most
amazing country in the world, but that doesn’t mean we can’t open our doors to people
who are truly seeking a safer, better life. In fact, it means we should. God
gave Israel the promised land, and he commanded them to welcome the stranger
who wanted to come in.

Your interview with this leader of Black Lives Matter was the push I needed to rejoin The Heritage Foundation. We have to sit down with folks we disagree with and listen to their side of the story too. We have to love our neighbors as ourselves.—Glenna Wilger

***

This interview truly touched me.

I
try to talk to everyone I can, regardless of color, about what do we do to love
one another. I have had some wonderful conversations and some strange looks,
but I will continue.

Thank you again to Rob Bluey and The Heritage Foundation, because this is the only way to save our country and the right thing to do for humanity.—Gail Smith

A Virginian’s Thoughts on Blackface

Dear Daily Signal: I was born and raised in Newport News, Virginia. I married a Navy man, and we were stationed a few times in Norfolk but mainly in other states and overseas. 

The Virginia ways were different way back when, and blackface was
common for costumes. Our high school was Warwick High, and our sports teams
were called the Farmers. During our Farmers Day celebration, we would dress up
as farmers or even the help (in blackface). I can honestly say that it was done
in a respectful manner.

And at that time, we had an all-white school; changes occurred in
September of 1971, after I graduated. We had a wrought iron plow at the
front of our school, donated by a former student. Our band, the Grenadiers and
Bagpipe Corps, had been there since my mother attended the school.

When busing started in 1971, the first change made was the removal
of our beloved plow, because new students claimed the plow reminded them of “the
slave days.” The next to go was the Warwick High Farmers and our award-winning
bands.

The school became the Warwick High Raiders, and had a band with
glittery uniforms (and bouncy band members gyrating all over the place). The
Grenadiers became military-like; their uniforms came from England and looked
like the Queen’s Guard. The pipers’ uniforms were from Scotland.

Why so many changes? Why weren’t the traditions left as they were
since the beginning of the school? None of it was against anyone, it was simply
pride of being farmers.

Back to blackface. I remember my parents burning a cork which would
be used to blacken our faces, either for Farmers events or Halloween. My daddy
was a carpenter and most of his crew was black. Some of the wives would also
help us dress up. They were enjoying the experience.

There was no feeling of hatred toward the black community, as we enjoyed
having them around us. A few neighbors did not like having them around, but
Daddy told them to hush up and not ruin things for us.

In fact, Daddy told us that if we were having trouble and were in
the black neighborhood, we could walk up to any house and ask for help and we
would be safe there. In other words, Daddy did not have a racist bone in his
body. He taught us well, and we four kids taught our own children not to look
at skin color. As Daddy said, “Skin is just a shell, as everyone is the
same on the inside.”

I remember watching old movies where actors performed in blackface.
For example, Bing Crosby in “Holiday Inn” sang a song called “Abraham” to
celebrate Lincoln’s birthday. There were also minstrel shows that had blackface
skits. It was fun to watch. I never saw any of it to be disrespectful. 

The news media is going crazy over Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam and
pictures of blackface. It also drew attention to the Ku Klux Klan in the
process. All of the timeline was so long ago. Why is this even a subject? What
the governor did while in college is not a crime.

By the way, I wish that the true startup of the KKK would be told more often. It was a Democrat agenda that mainly targeted blacks, but they did kill white people. In many articles I have read, they reveal that there were black members of the KKK.—Patricia Berry, Talladega, Ala.  

Demonizing ‘MAGA’ Hats

Dear Daily
Signal:
I read your articles about teens wearing “Make America Great
Again” hats and how they are being targeted by the left. I was discussing very
recently with a few friends how we are afraid to let our teen sons (who happen
to be Caucasian) wear anything remotely patriotic, especially anything about Trump
or MAGA, for a real fear for their safety. 

These are smart, kindhearted, nice boys with big futures ahead of
them from highly educated homes who, like many in this country, have the
audacity to believe in conservatism.  We
don’t want them to go to any hot-topic rallies such as peaceful pro-life
marches for fear of their safety (read: Nick Sandmann), or question their
extremely left-leaning high school teachers in debates or even when writing
papers. 

My 11-year-old daughter is writing a paper right now on “why
should cat-calling be made illegal.” Yes, that’s fifth grade. When I
explained the idea of the First Amendment, she was stunned that rude people and
words we don’t like exist, but we don’t have to listen. We have the choice to
not listen. We do not have the right to remove someone’s right to speak like a
jerk. 

Why isn’t that the topic? 
The end result was she was too afraid to put that argument in her paper
for fear her teacher would give her a bad grade. I wish I could say this
incident was unique, but it comes up over and over again with my high schooler.
Papers are being graded not on the merit of the argument, but by the ability to
fall in line with left ideologies, victim mentality, and the erosion of
liberty.

We are moms who are afraid for our kids’ safety, their physical as
well as mental safety. Because we believe in small government and personal
responsibility, we are labeled fascists. And any amount of bullying,
intimidation, and even violence is not only allowed by the left but cheered.

I am one of so many who are afraid to say what we believe. We are
already living in the fascism Reagan predicted.—Tara Saunders, Blaine, Wash.

***

Wearing the “MAGA” hat is something that all conservatives should be doing now.

First,
it is front and center in the exercise of our First Amendment rights.
Liberals/Democrats would love nothing better than to shame us into renouncing
our right to wear it. Mainstream media stations are on a 24/7 campaign to
denounce it as a symbol of white nationalism or racism. 

By
wearing the hat, we firmly insist that it stands for something quite different.
It stands for exactly what the president has accomplished with his policies—prosperity. It
stands for what he advocates when he insists on the border wall–national
security and a refusal to allow the country to crumble under the weight of
unfettered immigration.

I have written my congressmen and told them that in the next State of the Union, they should all, male and female, proudly don the MAGA hat. Voters should have no doubt whatsoever which party stands for America and which one stands for her destruction.—Jo Ann Boutwell, Birmingham, Ala.

***

The reason the media slimes teens with MAGA hats is because they have nothing to counter it with. “Make America Great Again” is impossible to refute a

nd destroys the left in a simple phrase. It goes right to the very heart of the thing that the left has to destroy, and they’re helpless against it.

So instead, they use labels like Hitlerian and fascist, frantically
hoping identity politics (a fancy name for third-grade name-calling) will
suffice because that’s all they have left to use.

And yet contributing to your country’s greatness is exactly the
diametric opposite of fascism. It can only exist in the freedom which true capitalism
affords.—Craig Brougher

More on a Tale of Two Marches

Dear Daily Signal: I enjoyed Rachel del Guidice’s report on the March for Life (“I Went to the March for Life. Here Are 7 Things I Saw”). I am 63 years old and have been married to my lovely wife Lori for 31 years. We have three grown children and our family has always been pro-life.

I support The Heritage
Foundation, Life Issues Institute, and other conservative groups.  I am greatly relieved to see that we have a great group of young people
in America that gets it. Life, all life, is special. That’s all that needs to
be understood.

I am of the belief that God still loves America, that we should do
all we can to reverse Roe v. Wade, and that saving life will again bring
blessings upon our land. We have suffered much, like ancient Israel, because of
the wrongs we have done to the unborn.

God’s blessings to Rachel del Guidice and her fellow staffers.—Mike Cave, Silver Creek, Neb.

***

Really interesting and well-written article by Rachel del Guidice (“I’ve Been Going to the March for Life Since I Was 12. 3 Things I’ve Learned”). 

I thank her for her commitment and for sharing her views and experiences.  Very heartening.—Majesty Pautzke

***

Thanks to Rachel del Guidice for being at the March for Life and
giving us the truth about the wonderful people who marched for life and the
values they stand for.  (We had hoped to
attend the rally.)

It is such a contrast to how the mainstream media reports–the
continuous coverage and misrepresentation of the “other side” and very little
coverage of conservative, traditional values, and people of faith.

Thank you for the excellent coverage.—Valerie McLeod, Phoenixville, Pa.

***

Thanks for Rachel del
Guidice’s observations on the Women’s March (“I
Went to the Women’s March. Here Are 6 Things I Saw
”). I don’t think
the women at this march really have a platform, as it’s all over the place,
based on her reporting and the signage.

They are willing to be part of the chaos they are representing.
There is very little solution for a mob mentality and the anger displayed, unless
they get their way, period.

Great reporting.—Larry Collins, Mason, Ohio

***

Thanks, Rachel, for reporting on the news the media ignores.—Richard Ward

***

I am a strong advocate for life as well as a mom, grandma, artist,
teacher, and author. Rachel del Guidice’s article and pictures on the March for
Life were so refreshing, including the contrasting statement about how other
marches are viewed.

This article should be read by everyone. There are so many of us
out here cheering Rachel and God’s wonderful message of life and love. Keep up
the good work.—Holly Friesen, Kansas

***

I love you, Rachel del Guidice. Keep
up the good work. Your reward in heaven is awaiting your arrival, but please
stay here to report on this evil culture.

Wish I had funds to give millions, but unfortunately my wife and I are struggling to live on Social Security. We will, however, continue to pray for Rachel and her work.—Don Fiegel

This and
That

Dear Daily Signal: For decades, the
public schools have decided it was easier to make all children equally
challenged in political correctness rather than in intellectual acquisition of
knowledge useful for their prosperity, or to expand their curiosity (“Parents
Deserve to Be in the Driver’s Seat of Their Children’s Educations
”).

In doing so, the schools have created a large segment of young
people who have been educated through social media with no way of distinguishing
between actual facts and well-placed bylines that continue the distortion and
propaganda perpetuated upon them since their youth.

Kay Coles James and The Heritage Foundation offer ample reasons
for taxpayer money in the form of vouchers to be assigned to each student, and
for parents to decide where the funds are awarded. Government or Big Brother
has only one objective, and it has nothing to do with expanding or increasing
the knowledge of our children.

Rather, the goal is to expand and grow government to make it the
center of our lives. The utopia is theirs, and they decide who becomes a part
of their society and gets to share in the confiscated wealth of the private
sector they disdain but have to tolerate for their own existence.

They fear school vouchers because that will put the power of
common sense back into the hands of the people who can save our constitutional
republic from the throngs of socialism.—Brannen Edwards, Savannah, Ga.

***

President Trump’s Oval Office appeal to America on border security
was completely on point, followed immediately by obvious, uncaring, hateful
retaliation from the left.

Two summers ago, we visited the libraries of former Presidents Andrew Jackson
and Abraham Lincoln. We were stunned to learn both presidents were presented by
the media of their day as incompetents from backwoods Hicksville.

Jackson and Lincoln both came from nowhere (as did President Trump)
to acquire our nation’s highest office, bypassing all acceptable insider processes.
Today, these media attacks continue with our current president.

Abe Lincoln became our nation’s greatest president only after he was
assassinated, and his elevation to greatness is thankfully supported by the
historical record–as I predict will occur to President Trump when the
historical record is eventually written. 

It takes amazing courage or fortitude to ignore the screaming hornets’ nest and
remain totally focused on initiating policies or agendas that are best for our
nation’s longevity. How amazingly blessed we are to have this great American
leader at this critical time.—Ron Dale,
Boise, Idaho

***

I’m sure someone in the president’s circle knows something that
the Dems or Nancy Pelosi really, really want … badly. Find a way to offer that,
omitting the DACA deal, and see how fast she grabs the new deal.

That would definitely show America what her/their real priorities
are.  It’s not the Latino population, for
sure.

I hope President Trump never gives up on the border wall. I work
as a part of state government, and see firsthand how much of our tax money is
given away to non-Americans. Yes, nonworking white and black Americans get it too,
but far less than the noncitizen Latino population.

I am not prejudiced in the least.  I hardly ever look past my own little square
box that I live inside. It has only been in the past 10 years that I have
worked in public service that I have noticed all this money going out the door
and where it’s going.

As a former struggling single mom myself, the amount of products
and money and services that are given away is ridiculous. How will they ever
learn to make it on their own?—Mona
Young, Roanoke, Va.

***

I can’t thank Anthony B. Kim and Ana Quintana enough for their commentary on Venezuela (“Today’s Venezuela: Where Socialism Meets Authoritarianism”). They so clearly define the situation in Venezuela and open the door to the primary point:  Latin America is like a broken record in its repetitive problems. 

Venezuela
has much in common with Third World countries.  For anyone who reads history,
this is a kind of breakdown that occurs over and over, since long before you
and I were born. Castro and all the others are just a repeat. 

We
cannot ignore the hard truth, and the threat they embody for the rest of the
world.—Connie Lain

***

The Democrats and their friends in the radical press and talk
shows, and all the usual suspects, keep downplaying the good news in the
country today simply because they cannot believe that a businessman took down
their queen.

Hatred is not a very good quality, but it is on display every day.

Not being able to celebrate record low unemployment, especially
with blacks, Latinos, and women? Family income rising for the first time in 10 years
thanks to the tax cuts, record-low layoffs, and very low inflation are all
something that should be celebrated, not demonized.

Listen very carefully to what liberal or progressive Democrats are
all about. They, parroted by an incredibly biased press, talk of income
inequality, Medicare for all (single-payer health care), debt-free college, redistribution
of wealth, handouts and freebies for all. Then there’s this open borders
fantasy and sanctuary cities and states.

They use logical fallacies to support their cause, not to forget
obstructing everything, even anything good for the country. Should they gain more
power, everybody will learn that fair to them will not be fair to you. Anything
that you earn, they intend to take away. After all, you are not being fair, even
allowing that you worked hard to earn it.

Perhaps one of the most serious issues, growing every day, is the
socialist indoctrination of kids at all levels, and especially college kids who
are now graduating and moving into the workplace and politics.

The road to hell is paved by Democrats who aren’t in doing what’s
right for the country, only power and stopping Trump, which is priority No. 1.
Should they be successful, I will make this prediction: The day will come when
it will be too late, and everybody will be sitting around saying: “How did this
happen?”

Wake up, America!—Robert Patrick, McCormick, S.C.

***

Someone should tell Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam that politicians are supposed to kiss babies, not kill them (“Catholic Bishop Condemns Northam’s Infanticide Comments“).

This story has legs. This is how the progressives really feel. Northam, in addition to being a moron, is also a sociopath.—Edward Lawrence  

***

Turnabout is fair play. In the face of the current trend to demonize men in general using the label “toxic masculinity,” let’s call out the “smother mother” nanny state for what it is: toxic femininity.—Brendan Doss, San Francisco

How Are We Doing?

Dear Daily
Signal:
I
want to take a moment to congratulate Rob Bluey and The Daily Signal crew on
the quality of your reporting.

I
used to scan through your headline email and read a story or two. Lately, I
have been reading every one and tweeting several. You all are really on top of
the hot issues and doing quality, responsible reporting and analysis.

That
is appreciated. I’m confident you are enjoying your jobs, since accomplishing
good work is always rewarding.—Sheryl Kaufman

***

I am
a member of The Heritage Foundation and used to write to my local county paper,
which comes out weekly. My letters were respectful and fulfilled all their
requirements.

Then,
during a change in the paper’s ownership, my letters were often said to be too
long, even though I used Word with a word count to keep track.

Now I
see CNN proclaiming that 1,000 women marched in the March for Life and I see
Spotify among a growing list of media that will not recognize PragerU, and I
wonder how we can stand.

If we
have a shrinking outlet for our voice, how does that work?—Cindy Akre, Plano, Ill. 

***

I enjoy The Daily Signal’s newsletter
and podcasts.

Sometimes I would prefer to read the
transcript of the podcast rather than listen to it. Would you be so kind to
include a link to a transcript in the future?

Keep up the great work.—Stephen Foster

***

Is it possible to have
transcripts of The Daily Signal’s podcasts posted on your site? I like to refer
back to the information during discussions with others, and sometimes I have
trouble accurately recalling facts from the podcasts.

By the way, I enjoy The
Daily Signal very much and encourage others to read it. Keep up the good work.—Lynn Czech, Clinton Township, Mich.

***

The Daily Signal does a good job of propagating the extreme right-wing propaganda produced by The Heritage Foundation.

Heritage is itself an enemy combatant
of democracy.—Kenneth McClintic

***

Thanks for Fred
Lucas’s honest research, and for his being American in heart and ideal.—Curt Gibb

***

Thank you. Keep up the good work!—Trish Callahan, LaGrange, Ga.

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