Va State Legislator-Black People Should "Get Over" Slavery - U2 Feedback

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Old 01-17-2007, 11:32 AM   #1
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Va State Legislator-Black People Should "Get Over" Slavery

And he made other lovely comments too. I cannot believe that people in elected office say things like that in public and for publication- it's bad enough that they believe them and say them in private.

Black people 'should get over' slavery? Comment stuns lawmakers in Virginia
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
01/17/2007

RICHMOND, Va. — A state legislator said black people "should get over" slavery and questioned whether Jews should apologize "for killing Christ," drawing denunciations Tuesday from stunned colleagues.

Delegate Frank D. Hargrove, who is white and Christian, made his remarks in opposition to a measure that would apologize on the state's behalf to the descendants of slaves.

In an interview published Tuesday in The Daily Progress of Charlottesville, Hargrove, 79, said slavery ended nearly 140 years ago with the Civil War and added that "our black citizens should get over it."

The newspaper also quoted him as saying, "are we going to force the Jews to apologize for killing Christ?"

Black lawmakers swiftly denounced Hargrove's comments.

"When somebody tells me I should just get over slavery, I can only express my emotion by projecting that I am appalled, absolutely appalled," said Delegate Dwight C. Jones, head of the Legislative Black Caucus.

Delegate David L. Englin also criticized Hargrove's remarks, recalling that his grandparents were driven from their homes in Poland "by people who believed that as Jews, we killed Christ."

When Hargrove rose to speak, he told Englin he didn't care about Englin's religion. "I think your skin was a little too thin," Hargrove said as lawmakers gasped and groaned.
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Old 01-17-2007, 12:10 PM   #2
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YAY more embarrassing Virginia politicians!!!!!!!

Ironically enough Jim Webb will be giving the response to the SOTU, making the 2nd Virginian in a row to do so

I've met Del. Englin on several occasions, he's an outstanding delegate with a bright future ahead of him. Del. Hargrove on the other hand...meh. Never liked him.
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Old 01-17-2007, 12:22 PM   #3
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I am just saying what I heard an African American caller say on the Radio (560 KSFO) "That black people need to get over the reperations and slavery thing" It happened over 200 years ago. That they need to start living there own lives and stop blaming others for the problems they face now. (I heard this on the Radio)

What would you all say if the person who said this in the Legislative was black?
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Old 01-17-2007, 12:38 PM   #4
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Originally posted by Justin24
What would you all say if the person who said this in the Legislative was black?
I would say, well at least he could relate somehow, but he still doesn't speak for all black people.
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Old 01-17-2007, 12:46 PM   #5
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Are you esstially saying that we should carry the burden of what our ancestors did? If so then the same should go to the Egyptions, the dutch, the spanish etc...
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Old 01-17-2007, 12:50 PM   #6
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There was a really interesting BBC Drama programme called 'Don't Shoot The Messenger'. This explains it better than my shoddy memory can:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/entertainment/5274198.stm

Anyway, there was a bit in the programme where the main character questioned the issue of slavery, whether it was really just a victimhood culture that was damaging to the black community and ended up being branded a coconut for his remarks. But the ending of the show was the most interesting part as it seemed to imply that in trying to right what he saw as the wrongs of black culture he just ended up damaging it.

That was really badly explained. I suppose you'd just have to watch it to see what I mean!
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Old 01-17-2007, 12:54 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by Justin24
Are you esstially saying that we should carry the burden of what our ancestors did? If so then the same should go to the Egyptions, the dutch, the spanish etc...
Yep pretty much. Until the centuries-old after effects of slavery (hella poverty anyone?) finally wear off, anyway. I'd be much more willing to let some of Europe off the hook on the Holocaust if there weren't still reports of widespread anti-Semitism going on over there.

And as an average (assuming white) American, Justin, how is the 'burden" of slavery affecting you from day to day? I doubt it's much of a burden.
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Old 01-17-2007, 12:59 PM   #8
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First off I am hispanic and cuacassian. (Mostly hispanic) Slavery is not affecting me at all. What happened in the past can not be changed but we can and did change the future. We learned from our mistakes.
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Old 01-17-2007, 01:04 PM   #9
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Some US citizens may beg to disagree

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Old 01-17-2007, 01:09 PM   #10
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Quote:
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Are you esstially saying that we should carry the burden of what our ancestors did?
We do, look around. Look at the economic gaps and the racism we still have in this country. These are results of slavery, quit acting like it isn't.
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Old 01-17-2007, 01:12 PM   #11
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I am not saying it is. But it's the indvidual not all of society.
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Old 01-17-2007, 01:16 PM   #12
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But it's the indvidual not all of society.
What's the individual?
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Old 01-17-2007, 01:38 PM   #13
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there are a lot of prominent african-americans who have similarlines of thought... bill cosby for one. not neccesarily a "get over it" stance... more of a not using it as a crutch for all the problems in the world line of thinking.

that said, wether you agree with it or not (and i'm not saying i do, mind you) as an elected legislator of your state you simply can not make a statement like that. intelligent discussion on the issue is one thing... moronic blanket statements is another.
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Old 01-17-2007, 01:50 PM   #14
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Gotta love some of the reader comments on this from the Richmond Times-Dispatch...
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I agree with Del. Hargrove. We had to give up Lee-Jackson day for MLK day. The civil war was as important to America as MLK. Why is it that "native" Americans are in the minority now?

Frank Hargrove is right, get over it. Only a race-hustler would stoop so low as to try to gin-up some fervor over slavery. What a shame that blacks can't see that thier oppressors today are their people.

A Jew who takes offense to this is either not very bright or a political opportunist without scruples. Calling everyone not themselves Gentiles is the oldest racist thinking surviving today.

I agree with Hargrove. You can blame others for your laziness only so long. You lie, cheat, steal and when caught - I'm Black or my grandparents died in the camps. Grow up!...
Amazing how much defensiveness the prospect of offering a few formal words of collective regret for a shameful historical legacy of 250 years and millions of lives lost or lived out in degradation, suffering and misery can stir up, isn't it? He finds this humiliating, or what? What would it cost him, what outrageously undeserved windfall does it offer to African-Americans? It is for him to decide how the progress of their "getting over it" is going and hold a collective expression of regret hostage to that? And the irony of him responding by reducing Jews to something done to one person by one small group of individuals 2000 years ago in another country 6000 miles away...sure, Delegate Hargrove, since you've chosen to frame things in those terms, let me assure you how grateful we are for the fantastic forgiveness "you people" have consistently shown us for 2000 years.
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Old 01-17-2007, 02:00 PM   #15
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There's a great story in U2 at the End of the World where Bono is expressing hope that the inauguration of Bill Clinton will exorcise some of American's demons -- racism, slavery, taking the land from Native Americans, etc. At one point he says that there's only so much one can realistically do to make peace with the past. "Want to apologize to Native Americans? Okay, give back the land."

I don't know what to do about America's racist past, since it influences the present. From a religious perspective, there are a number of churches and ministries that have embarked on a process of racial reconciliation. While I'm not convinced reparations are the answer, I don't know what is. And until we figure out how to make it work, comments like Hargrove's are unhelpful in the extreme.
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