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  • Advise is vice disguised as kindness
    in a brusque and brutal form
    “Don't write about being white.”
    says Reginald Dwayne Betts,
    and I reply, “Why not?”
    Oh, I know it's politically incorrect
    to declare the facts of history
    which make persons of color
    uncomfortable, to agitate
    emotions and bring up the past.
    It's definitely not popular
    to be proud of the men and women
    who formed civilization
    while others are living in squalor
    by choice, rejecting white science
    because it is not their own.
    Spreading AIDS rampantly, with no
    regard for the women or men they infect,
    selling women as chattel or slave labor,
    growing fields of marijuana and opium poppies
    and cocaine. Certainly not a white heritage moment
    in Mexico or Turkey or Columbia
    or Africa or throughout the Middle East.
    See, I'm white, and I can throw stones
    about other people if I choose.
    And they can throw them back.
    And we can keep on doing this
    generation after generation,
    teaching our children
    to hate one another
    based on the color of their skin
    or the name they call God
    or the flag that waves overhead.
    It's our choice, you know,
    to forgive or not,
    to love or hate,
    to judge.
    The purpose of prayer
    is to remember.

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