sundown towns??? i grew up in taylor county. no, we didn't usually have a lot of black kids around. few, as i remember. i don't know why. if i were to guess, i'd say most people in a small, sparsely populated area where farm ground is poor at best, are there simply because they can't leave. not because new folks aren't allowed...
go with me for a minute on this. i can get a little wordy and lengthy but with personal knowledge of almost all the people in this article i have some perspective you may appreciate.
des moines register article
read the above article link and you'll have the story i'm referring to.
this is a perfect example of people writing a story and bending information for a specific outcome. lonnie, the sherriff in taylor county is my dad's good friend and our families have been close for as long as i've been around. lonnie's comments, just like jobe's and sefrit's were printed out of context and manipulated to give a certain storyline. none of these people are racist and none of them are proud of the black's treatment in the past years. i found it especially offensive when the article pointed out the few numbers of blacks in taylor (2) and the neighboring county to the west of page with a total of 313 blacks. what the article didn't print was the fact that nearly all of the blacks counted are housed in the clarinda prison... WTF?
the article makes lonnie sound like a racist joke cracking lawman - nothing could be further from the truth. floyd jobe is an old boy playing cards at "morning coffee" with the boys, all of which are 75+... he's depicted as a guy setting out on the front porch with a jug of moonshine and his corncob pipe - he looks up over his cards and points as if he didn't care and dismisses it as a the black fellow headed north... we're talking about a guy playing cards with his few buddies he hasn't burried... not jim crow... as for frank sefrit, he's a nice guys who's grandpa wasn't keen on blacks. no more no less. the article doesn't make these guys out to be crooks but it implies that they know of racism and either don't fight it or are indifferent to it, therefore in favor of it... pathetic.
the real story here is simple. there are old ordnances on the city books of most any town anywhere that neither apply today nor should/would be enforced. we could spend a lot of time and money routinely auditing these books during meetings and cleanse them, but this is unlikely. the article should have said: if you have old sundown laws on the books, omit them, as they are unwise and leave you open to scrutinization and legal issues.
instead we get the iowa/missouri border doesn't like blacks speech... this kind of story ignites fires where there were none... they serve little or no purpose and cause much more harm than any perceived good...
i'm a little racist i guess, maybe not. i guess i don't know.
what i do know is that when the local paper makes this kind of "attack" on my friends and former home, i'm not only mad but disappointed. the article was designed specifically to provoke a poor reaction and it has - this kind of story sells papers and increases circulation. unfortunately for a struggling community with the poorest counties in iowa it does them no good. the article closes by suggesting a monetary penalty to those communities without a "quota" of varied race and asks the sundown communities to apologize. reperations ring a bell?
i've talked to my folks and was really disheartened. the local community has worked hard to clean the area up and they've suffered plenty in the last 20 years as the younger people leave and don't return. to offer an article like this that isn't accurate or relevant is to kill the little towns. maybe the register would rather see a booming industry of meth labs ran by whites and blacks together to better fill out the racial profile they hope to achieve? regardless of color this is what we'll have if we kill the rural areas...
no takers, huh?
This kinda crap burns me up! Lets see, this author, comes into town and ineffect says I wanna dig up your past and rub salt in the wounds that you have already let mend. Not to mention the money, but haven't most people immigrated to this country? Remember history class, "the melting pot of the world."
Lets see if they deserve reparations then all of the Irish, Germans and Scots need some, they were forced to fight in a civil war, right off the BOAT!
What else do people think an African-American's deserve?
I'm part Indian, and to my knowledge my family has never received any reparations. Am I knocking on someones door to get it, no. I will find a way to live my own life without it.
I hate freakin reporters,they make up whatever they want and say they have the freedom of the press to back them up.I was interviewed for a newspaper article one time,when it came out,the story was only half-true.When I complained to the reporter,he told me he could write whatever he wanted to.
I dislike the biased a$$---- national news reporters also.