Day: June 28, 2015

~Part 2-Of a nation that’s doomed~

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And let me be clear, the Hispanic community is very religious, traditional and family-oriented as well. An ill-conceived assault against the church — a rallying point across the minority communities — could bode dismay for the liberal progressives of the Democrat party heading into the 2016 election year. It could be a policy issue that works against the left and galvanizes those who support traditional marriage.

I know there are folks on the liberal progressive left who frequent this website. So here is my message. The Christian church community is a lot bigger and more powerful than you think — they kept a Republican from winning the White House. And these aren’t just old white men – there’s a growing young Christian constituency. You can criticize the Christian right all you want, but surrendering one’s faith principle for political gain is not a viable proposition. And in the case of prosecution of the Christian church, there could be a rallying of churches, regardless of race, the likes of which this nation has not seen.

The SCOTUS decision on same-sex marriage is not about the issue itself — it is about individual religious freedom and the imposition of the State’s will against faith. After all, it is the original reason why the Pilgrims fled England. And since there is no place for men and women of faith to retreat — they will make a stand. This ain’t first century Rome.

An atheist scientist has accused God with a flood of adversarial adjectives. In his book, he wrote –
“The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.” (God Delusion. Chapter 2 p.31)
Breaking down the paragraph, here is the list of the freak accusations against the Creator by the freakiest of freaks, Richard Dawkins:
1. Unforgiving control-freak
2. Vindictive
3. Bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser
4. Misogynistic
5. Homophobic
6. Racist
7. Infanticidal
8. Genocidal
9. Filicidal
10. Pestilential
11. Megalomaniacal
12. Sadomasochistic
13. Capriciously malevolent bully
Unforgiving Control-Freak?
Unfortunately, for this scientist, his understanding about a creator in charge is nil. Anyone accusing somebody to be an “unforgiving control-freak” without basis is a freak himself like Dawkins! The less-than-zero god of Dawkins is all of these, yet he is petty?
As recorded in the history of God’s nation, because of human greed and caprices, the Israelites suffered with rigor in the hands of the cruel Egyptians for four hundred years.
GENESIS 15:13-16
13 And he said unto Abram, Know of a surety that thy seed shall be a stranger in a land that is not theirs, and shall serve them; and they shall afflict them four hundred years;
14 And also that nation, whom they shall serve, will I judge: and afterward shall they come out with great substance.
15 And thou shalt go to thy fathers in peace; thou shalt be buried in a good old age.
16 But in the fourth generation they shall come hither again: for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full.
Why did it take that long? God is a forgiving God, waiting patiently for people to repent and realize the consequences of their iniquities. The timing was not only for the Israelites, but also for their enemies.
His being a forgiving God spells His long-suffering for the Amorites. Who are these Amorites?
The Amorites were an ancient nation mentioned frequently in the Old Testament. They were descended from one of the sons of Canaan (Genesis 14:7). In early inscriptions, the Amorites were also known as Amurra or Amurri. The “land of the Amorites” included Syria and Palestine. Some of the southern mountains of Judea were also called the hill country of the Amorites (Deuteronomy 1:7,19-20). Despite their strong numbers and military might, the Amorites were destroyed due to their worship of false gods. Israel’s conquest of their land was part of God’s judgment on the pagan Amorite culture. The Amorite nation had plenty of time to turn from their idolatry, but they despised God’s goodness and longsuffering and refused to repent (Romans 2:4). The Lord’s judgment upon them was severe, and anyone who imitates their rebellion will eternally regret it (Romans 2:5; Matthew 10:28;Revelation 2:22-23). (Ref: Norman Geisler and Joseph M. Holden, The Popular Handbook of Archaeology and the Bible, Harvest House Publishers, 2012).
II PETER 3:9
The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness;but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
This is because His desire is for all men to be saved.
I TIMOTHY 2:4
Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.
This long span of years – four hundred – proves God’s patience and forgiveness for the abuses of the Egyptians against the Israelites and the grace of His forgiveness and patience towards the Amorites (used interchangeably with Canaanites). But seeing that the hardness of their hearts and the degree of corruption the Amorites have accumulated in their ungodly way of life, God ordered the Israelites to get rid of these people. This was after God liberated the Israelites from Egypt. For this, isn’t Dawkins accusing God for being “bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser?”
For us to understand the order of God, let us look into model cases in the Bible of annihilation of nations. In various verses, one can read: “wipe them out,” “throw them into confusion,” “make them turn their backs and run,” “drive them out of your way,””strike them down” “dispossess,” “drive out,” “thrust out,” “destroy them,” “subdue them before you,” “annihilate,” “deliver them over to you,” “defeat them,” “give kings into your hands,” and “wipe out their names from under heaven.” But according to Analyst Glenn Miller (ChristianThinkTank.com, 2000), when these aregrouped into two categories– dispossession versus destruction – the first comes out with 33 occurrences, and destruction only11 occurrences, with a ratio of 3:1.
Recognizing the intent of the ‘punishment’ explains the order. Accordingly, God was destroying a culture and its carriers, and not necessarily all the individuals in it. In brief, the model cases, as explained by Miller were as follows –
(1) In the story of Sodom and Gomorrah, the cities were destroyed without human agency, and that the vegetation was destroyed. God used some type of natural disaster to accomplish the destruction.
(2)The Flood of Noah was the largest annihilation/judgment to date and it involved people, animals, and much vegetation (Gen 6-8).
(3)The Amalekite initiative looks like an ordered annihilation;
1 Samuel 15:3 (KJV)
Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.
The annihilation was to punish the Amalekites for what they did to Israel when they waylaid them as they came up from Egypt. The Amalekites are a predatory, raiding, and nomadic group.
(4) In the book of Jonah, what is there is an ‘averted annihilation’.
JONAH 1:1-5 (KJV)
1 Now the word of the Lord came unto Jonah the son of Amittai, saying,
2 Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness is come up before me.
3 But Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish from the presence of the Lord, and went down to Joppa; and he found a ship going to Tarshish: so he paid the fare thereof, and went down into it, to go with them unto Tarshish from the presence of the Lord.
4 But the Lord sent out a great wind into the sea, and there was a mighty tempest in the sea, so that the ship was like to be broken.
5 Then the mariners were afraid, and cried every man unto his god, and cast forth the wares that were in the ship into the sea, to lighten it of them. But Jonah was gone down into the sides of the ship; and he lay, and was fast asleep……
In short, the people of Nineveh, confronted with warning, responded and averted the annihilation.
From these model cases, the obvious pattern is that the annihilations are judgments over cruelty and violence of an extreme and widespread nature, preceded by long periods of warning or exposure to truth and therefore, with opportunity to change outcomes. But the list of Amorite/Canaanite “religious” practices included: (1) Child sacrifice (with at least some of it in fire); (2) Incest; (3) Bestiality; (3) Homosexual practices; and (4) Cultic prostitution (Miller, 2000; Hobrink, 2011).
Reality dictates that there are people who have no right to live in a civilized society. Governments of almost all civilized nations impose capital punishment for people who are found to be prejudicial to the existence of the better elements of society.
The Bible teaches that children, unlike their evil parents, are welcome in heaven.
MATTHEW 19:14
But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me:for of such is the kingdom of heaven.
Here’s an archeological account on the land of Canaan suggesting that children were also afflicted by the sexually transmitted diseases prevalent in Canaan during the time that God commanded Israelites to claim the land of the Amorites!
God’s express command to Israel was to destroy or drive out the Canaanites (Deuteronomy 7:2, 3). And Joshua went at the task in dead earnest, God himself helping with mighty miracles. In reality, GOD DID IT.
In excavation at Gezer, Macalister, of the Palestine Exploration Fund (1904-09), found, in the Canaanite stratum, which had preceded Israelite occupation, of about 1500 B.C., the ruins of a “High Place,” which had been a temple in which they worshiped their god Baal and the goddess Ashtoreth (Astarte). It was an enclosure 150 by 120 feet, surrounded by a wall, open to the sky, where the inhabitants held their religious festivals. Within the walls were 10 rude stone pillars, 5 to 11 feet high, before which the sacrifices were offered. Under the debris, in this “High Place,” Macalister found great numbers of jars containing the remains of children who had been sacrificed to Baal. The whole area proved to be a cemetery for new-born babes.
Another horrible practice was that they called “foundation sacrifices.” When a house was to be build (sic), a child would be sacrificed, and its body built into the wall, to bring good luck to the rest of the family. Many of these were found in Gezer. They have been found also at Megiddo, Jerico and other places.
Also, in this High Place, under the rubbish Macalister found enormous quantities of images and plaques of Ashtoreth with rudely exaggerated sex organs designed to foster sensual feelings.
So, Canaanites worshiped, by immoral indulgence, as a religious rite, in the presence of their gods; and then, by murdering their first-born children, as a sacrifice to the same gods. It seems that, in large measure, the land of Canaan had become a sort of Sodom and Gomorrah on a national scale. (Ref: Halley’s Bible Handbook, Archaeological Notes: Canaanite Religion, pp166-167)
The Macalister mentioned here is Robert Alexander Stewart Macalister (1870-1950), an Irish archeologist who was responsible for the excavations at Gezer, one of the earliest large-scale scientific archeological excavations in the region. Gezer is said to be between Jerusalem and Jaffa. (Ref: http://archaeology.tau.ac.il/azekah/azekah/2-uncategorised/156-cont-23)
The height of the evil being practiced in Canaan was their cruelty against their children!
DEUTERONOMY 18:10-12
10 There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch,
11 Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer.
12 For all that do these things are an abomination unto the LORD: andbecause of these abominations the LORD thy God doth drive them out from before thee.
Canaanites butchered their children and burned them in the fire to make an offering to their false gods.
JEREMIAH 19:5
They have built also the high places of Baal, to burn their sons with fire for burnt offerings unto Baal, which I commanded not, nor spoke it, neither came it into my mind:
God is a God of justice. A God that allows ample time for repentance; but justice requires equity and equal rights. We are allowed to move with freedom, to live in comfort, to satisfy our desires carnal and spiritual, but not to the expense and detriment of others who have the same right as our own!
MATTHEW 7:12
Therefore all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them: for this is the law and the prophets.
God commanding the Israelites to annihilate the ungodly Amorites and Canaanites is God’s wise way of instilling in their minds that they must live in God’s justice if they have to live in peace. Cleansing in a civilized society is a must!
LEVITICUS 20:10-11, 16
10 And the man that committeth adultery with another man’s wife, even he that committeth adultery with his neighbor’s wife, the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death.
11 And the man that lieth with his father’s wife hath uncovered his father’s nakedness: both of them shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.
16 And if a woman approach unto any beast, and lie down thereto, thou shalt kill the woman, and the beast: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.
DEUTERONOMY 22:22
If a man be found lying with a woman married to a husband, then they shall both of them die, both the man that lay with the woman, and the woman: so shalt thou put away evil from Israel.
Ben Hobrink, a biologist, (Modern Science in the Bible: Amazing Scientific Truths Found in Ancient Texts, Amazon, 2011) wrote –
Obviously, the war that God ordered for the Amorites/Canaanites was not a war of unrestrained lust, greed for expensive goods, or even “empire-building.” God did not tolerate those attitudes. (Ref: Glenn Miller). It was a judgment that was to be executed – to get rid of evil influence.
The strong statement is that evil should not flourish. Now, Dr. Richard Dawkins, where do you stand? Obviously, you would prefer to preserve the kind that Amorites are.
This is Part 7 of Possibilities and Impossibilities in the Bible.
Check out the controversy on #Secondchancealliance
More to come.

~Part-1 Of A Nation That’s Doomed~

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He who obeys God’s laws finds him a father. He who disobeys them, finds him a judge.

Daniel D. Palmer

This week the Supreme Court ruled 5 to 4 in favor of same sex marriage in all 50 states. My friends, we are witnessing the end of federalism in our nation. In a single vote, 5 folks basically just told the states to “stick it.”

 Furthermore, we are in effect nullifying the First Amendment.

Consider this: what happens when a gay couple goes into a church wanting to plan a ceremony and the pastor says no? We now have a conflict between the First Amendment and individual behavior.

Dissenting Justice Antonin Scalia summed up his disgust with this ruling in a footnote on page 7 (note 22). He says, “If, even as the price to be paid for a fifth vote, I ever joined an opinion for the Court that began: ‘The Constitution promises liberty to all within its reach, a liberty that includes certain specific rights that allow persons, within a lawful realm, to define and express their identity,’ I would hide my head in a bag. The Supreme Court of the United States has descended from the disciplined legal reasoning of John Marshall and Joseph Story to the mystical aphorisms of the fortune cookie.”

With this ruling, the Supreme Court is essentially saying individuals have civil rights based on their sexual behavior, and setting up a monumental battle with the free exercise of religion. This could well be the straw that breaks the camel’s back – that camel being the up till now silent, passive Americans who have been cowed into “tolerating” societal changes that go counter to their fundamental beliefs.

As reported by the Christian Post in April, “The United States Supreme Court may soon liberate the biblically conservative church from old “prejudices” that should have long ago been “jettisoned,” forcing it into “rightly bowing to the enlightenments of modernity,” in the words of a recent writer in The New York Times.”

“Homosexuality must be removed from the “sin list” and, according to an MSNBC commentator, traditional marriage proponents must be forced “to do things they don’t want to do.” Sadly, this crusade will be like the Marxist “liberation” movements that promised to “free” people, but really were about control and suppression. The culmination may come as the Supreme Court hears oral arguments on same-sex marriage cases beginning April 28. By July 1 the Court possibly will issue an official ruling regarding the constitutional right to homosexual marriage. The Court’s decision may impact the form of biblically based churches dramatically. Churches that hold to a strict and conservative interpretation of the Bible’s teaching about gender and marriage may find themselves “Romanized”. The elites of first century Rome would not allow the church an institutional presence in society. “The Christian churches were associations which were not legally authorized, and the Roman authorities, always suspicious of organizations which might prove seditious, regarded them with jaundiced eye,” writes Kenneth Scott LaTourette.”

I found the statement “rightly bowing to the enlightenments of modernity” as rather odd. And the comments from the MSNBC commentator of “traditional marriage proponents being ‘forced’ to do the things they don’t want to do” as somewhat threatening.

These statements by progressive socialists are indicative of a lack of regard and respect for the First Amendment right of religious liberty. Here is where I see an incredible philosophical battle looming. Now that SCOTUS has ruled there is a constitutional right to marriage – which I fail to see how that could be construed — and the radical gay left decides to push the envelope against churches, it will be a strategic miscalculation for the liberal left.

This is why the solution of civil unions should have been the solution. If the country is “forced” to accept something that goes counter to a traditional value, there will undoubtedly be push back. And that push back will result in a galvanizing issue which I do not believe the liberal progressive left fully comprehends.

t’s simple — in the 2012 presidential election there were some five to seven million evangelical Christian voters who sat it out. They were not inspired and therefore did not participate. However, I believe with this decision, the left has overextended itself — as it has already based on courts overturning electorate decisions – and you will see a social conservative issue that will have greater prominence. Some on the center-right will say, drop it, that’s a bad policy recommendation. This issue will not lend itself to dismissal and cognitive dissonance — there must be a solution. The social conservative issue of marriage will not be thrown upon the ash heap. It shouldn’t be the prominent issue, but it does have cross interest appeal.

The Christian Post postulated, “What happens if local churches that do not embrace same-sex marriage find their legal status shaky or non-existent, as well as parachurch groups, conservative Christian colleges, church-based humanitarian agencies, and all other religious institutions – Christian and otherwise – supporting the traditional view of marriage. Without state-recognized corporate status everything from mortgages and building permits to employment and hiring practices is threatened – all of them essential for institutional function.”

“Journalist Ben Shapiro notes that there is already a movement on the state level “to revoke non-profit status for religious organizations that do not abide by same-sex marriage.” The Supreme Court’s decision could make churches refusing to comply “private institutions engaging in commerce,” and therefore subject to laws already in place. Refusal to perform a same-sex wedding would put a church out of business. Current trends seem to flow against conservative religious institutions. All the elites that set and propagate cultural consensus are aligned in support of same-sex marriage – the Entertainment Establishment, Information Establishment, Academic Establishment, and Political Establishment.”

However, are the entertainment, information (media), academic, and political establishments truly representative of American culture? Or do they just have a more prominent position, making us believe they have a majority opinion?

There has been little talk about how, during the Obama wave of 2008, same-sex marriage ballot proposals in two states did not win as liberal progressives and the gay left had hoped – in Florida and California. The quiet point that no one wanted to comprehend was that countless droves of black voters swarmed to the polls. And as they voted for the “first black president” they did NOT vote to bring about gay marriage in their states. Why? Because of traditional biblical beliefs. Now, in 2008, Obama stated he didn’t support gay marriage — when he decided to flip flop — the hushed-up secret was the anger and disdain this caused with many black pastors and ministers. We all know the Democrats wholeheartedly depend on an obedient black electoral patronage — what if 25 percent of blacks say no? Click to view pt;2 Part 2

~To a real extent you have grown up in a different country than I have~

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All, too, will bear in mind this sacred principle, that though the will of the majority is in all cases to prevail, that will to be rightful must be reasonable; that the minority possess their equal rights, which equal law must protect, and to violate would be oppression.

Thomas Jefferson

THE PRESIDENT:  For too long, we’ve been blind to the unique mayhem that gun violence inflicts upon this nation.

Removing the flag from this state’s capitol would not be an act of political correctness; it would not be an insult to the valor of Confederate soldiers.  It would simply be an acknowledgment that the cause for which they fought — the cause of slavery — was wrong, the imposition of Jim Crow after the Civil War, the resistance to civil rights for all people was wrong. It would be one step in an honest accounting of America’s history; a modest but meaningful balm for so many unhealed wounds.  It would be an expression of the amazing changes that have transformed this state and this country for the better, because of the work of so many people of goodwill, people of all races striving to form a more perfect union.  By taking down that flag, we express God’s grace.

But I don’t think God wants us to stop there. For too long, we’ve been blind to the way past injustices continue to shape the present.  Perhaps we see that now.  Perhaps this tragedy causes us to ask some tough questions about how we can permit so many of our children to languish in poverty, or attend dilapidated schools, or grow up without prospects for a job or for a career. Perhaps it causes us to examine what we’re doing to cause some of our children to hate. Perhaps it softens hearts towards those lost young men, tens and tens of thousands caught up in the criminal justice system and leads us to make sure that that system is not infected with bias; that we embrace changes in how we train and equip our police so that the bonds of trust between law enforcement and the communities they serve make us all safer and more secure.

Maybe we now realize the way racial bias can infect us even when we don’t realize it, so that we’re guarding against not just racial slurs, but we’re also guarding against the subtle impulse to call Johnny back for a job interview but not Jamal. So that we search our hearts when we consider laws to make it harder for some of our fellow citizens to vote. By recognizing our common humanity by treating every child as important, regardless of the color of their skin or the station into which they were born, and to do what’s necessary to make opportunity real for every American — by doing that, we express God’s grace.

THE PRESIDENT:  For too long, we’ve been blind to the unique mayhem that gun violence inflicts upon this nation.

Sporadically, our eyes are open:  When eight of our brothers and sisters are cut down in a church basement, 12 in a movie theater, 26 in an elementary school.  But I hope we also see the 30 precious lives cut short by gun violence in this country every single day; the countless more whose lives are forever changed — the survivors crippled, the children traumatized and fearful every day as they walk to school, the husband who will never feel his wife’s warm touch, the entire communities whose grief overflows every time they have to watch what happened to them happen to some other place.

The vast majority of Americans — the majority of gun owners — want to do something about this.  We see that now. And I’m convinced that by acknowledging the pain and loss of others, even as we respect the traditions and ways of life that make up this beloved country — by making the moral choice to change, we express God’s grace.

We don’t earn grace.  We’re all sinners.  We don’t deserve it. But God gives it to us anyway and we choose how to receive it.  It’s our decision how to honor it.

A Letter From Black America

Yes, we fear the police. Here’s why.

Last July 4, my family and I went to Long Island to celebrate the holiday with a friend and her family. After eating some barbecue, a group of us decided to take a walk along the ocean. The mood on the beach that day was festive. Music from a nearby party pulsed through the haze of sizzling meat. Lovers strolled hand in hand. Giggling children chased each other along the boardwalk.

Most of the foot traffic was heading in one direction, but then two teenage girls came toward us, moving stiffly against the flow, both of them looking nervously to their right. “He’s got a gun,” one of them said in a low voice.

I turned my gaze to follow theirs, and was clasping my 4-year-old daughter’s hand when a young man extended his arm and fired off multiple shots along the busy street running parallel to the boardwalk. Snatching my daughter up into my arms, I joined the throng of screaming revelers running away from the gunfire and toward the water.

The shots stopped as quickly as they had started. The man disappeared between some buildings. Chest heaving, hands shaking, I tried to calm my crying daughter, while my husband, friends and I all looked at one another in breathless disbelief. I turned to check on Hunter, a high school intern from Oregon who was staying with my family for a few weeks, but she was on the phone.

“Someone was just shooting on the beach,” she said, between gulps of air, to the person on the line.

Unable to imagine whom she would be calling at that moment, I asked her, somewhat indignantly, if she couldn’t have waited until we got to safety before calling her mom.

“No,” she said. “I am talking to the police.”

My friends and I locked eyes in stunned silence. Between the four adults, we hold six degrees. Three of us are journalists. And not one of us had thought to call the police. We had not even considered it.

We also are all black. And without realizing it, in that moment, each of us had made a set of calculations, an instantaneous weighing of the pros and cons.

As far as we could tell, no one had been hurt. The shooter was long gone, and we had seen the back of him for only a second or two. On the other hand, calling the police posed considerable risks. It carried the very real possibility of inviting disrespect, even physical harm. We had seen witnesses treated like suspects, and knew how quickly black people calling the police for help could wind up cuffed in the back of a squad car. Some of us knew of black professionals who’d had guns drawn on them for no reason.

This was before Michael Brown. Before police killed John Crawford III for carrying a BB gun in a Wal-Mart or shot down 12-year-old Tamir Rice in a Cleveland park. Before Akai Gurley was killed by an officer while walking in a dark staircase and before Eric Garner was choked to death upon suspicion of selling “loosies.” Without yet knowing those names, we all could go down a list of unarmed black people killed by law enforcement.

We feared what could happen if police came rushing into a group of people who, by virtue of our skin color, might be mistaken for suspects.

For those of you reading this who may not be black, or perhaps Latino, this is my chance to tell you that a substantial portion of your fellow citizens in the United States of America have little expectation of being treated fairly by the law or receiving justice. It’s possible this will come as a surprise to you. But to a very real extent, you have grown up in a different country than I have.

 As Khalil Gibran Muhammad, author of The Condemnation of Blackness, puts it, “White people, by and large, do not know what it is like to be occupied by a police force. They don’t understand it because it is not the type of policing they experience. Because they are treated like individuals, they believe that if ‘I am not breaking the law, I will never be abused.’”We are not criminals because we are black. Nor are we somehow the only people in America who don’t want to live in safe neighborhoods. Yet many of us cannot fundamentally trust the people who are charged with keeping us and our communities safe.

***

As protest and revolt swept across the Missouri suburb of Ferguson and demonstrators staged die-ins and blocked highways and boulevards from Oakland to New York with chants of “Black lives matter,” many white Americans seemed shocked by the gaping divide between law enforcement and the black communities they are supposed to serve. It was no surprise to us. For black Americans, policing is “the most enduring aspect of the struggle for civil rights,” says Muhammad, a historian and director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in New York. “It has always been the mechanism for racial surveillance and control.”

In the South, police once did the dirty work of enforcing the racial caste system. The Ku Klux Klan and law enforcement were often indistinguishable. Black-and-white photographs of the era memorialize the way Southern police sicced German shepherds on civil rights protesters and peeled the skin off black children with the force of water hoses. Lawmen were also involved or implicated in untold numbers of beatings, killings and disappearances of black Southerners who forgot their place.

In the North, police worked to protect white spaces by containing and controlling the rising black population that had been propelled into the industrial belt during the Great Migration. It was not unusual for Northern police to join white mobs as they attacked black homeowners attempting to move into white neighborhoods, or black workers trying to take jobs reserved for white laborers. And yet they strictly enforced vagrancy laws, catch-alls that gave them wide discretion to stop, question and arrest black citizens at will.

Much has changed since then. Much has not.

To a very real extent, you have grown up in a different country than I have.

Last Fourth of July, in a few short minutes as we adults watched the teenager among us talking to the police, we saw Hunter become a little more like us, her faith a little shaken, her place in the world a little less stable. Hunter, who is biracial and lives with her white mother in a heavily white area, had not been exposed to the policing many black Americans face. She was about to be.

n the phone, she could offer only the most generic of suspect descriptions, which apparently made the officer on the other end of the line suspicious. By way of explanation, Hunter told the officer she was just 16. The police called her back: once, twice, then three times, asking her for more information. The interactions began to feel menacing. “I’m not from here,” Hunter said. “I’ve told you everything I know.”

The fourth time the police called, she looked frightened. Her interrogator asked her, “Are you really trying to be helpful, or were you involved in this?” She turned to us, her voice aquiver. “Are they going to come get me?”

“See,” one of us said, trying to lighten the mood. “That’s why we don’t call them.”

We all laughed, but it was hollow.

My friend Carla Murphy and I have talked about that day several times since then. We’ve turned it over in our minds and wondered whether, with the benefit of hindsight, we should have called 911.

Carla wasn’t born in the United States. She came here when she was 9, and back in her native Barbados, she didn’t give police much thought. That changed when she moved into heavily black Jamaica, Queens.

Carla said she constantly saw police, often white, stopping and harassing passersby, almost always black. “You see the cops all the time, but they do not speak to you. You see them talking to each other, but the only time you ever see them interact with someone is if they are jacking them up,” she said. “They are making a choice, and it says they don’t care about you, it tells you they are not here for your people or people who look like you.”

click here to view columbian-exposition….