Living Together in Brotherhood
In today’s episode of “Healing From Within” your host Sheryl Glick author of The Living Spirit a tale of spiritual awakening, maturing soul life and a guide to cooperative and purposeful life experiences for everyone, is delighted to welcome for a third time on this show Roberta Grimes author of The Fun of Living Together co-authored with Kelley Glover. To hear other shows with Roberta and Sheryl go to her website www.sherylglick.com and check out the radio page link.
As listeners of the show are well aware Sheryl and her guests share intimate stories of awakening and a metaphysical search exploring energy and Universal Laws for developing a clearer intuitive sense of the human condition and also to recognize how necessary it is to observe and honor both our physical and spiritual essence in order to improve the quality of life individually and collectively.
We will discover how Roberta an attorney and prolific author with her good friend Kelly Glover who is a musician were guided to work on clarifying and sharing their combined understanding of America’s racial problems hoping to find ways to at last come together as a nation moving beyond the effects of slavery, reconstruction, civil rights and government efforts ending any limitations of the past to embrace equality for all. They will show us the afterlife evidence that assure us that spiritual growth is the whole purpose of human life and that religious traditions have not made this a priority and that has led to judgmental conclusions, separation and a less unified understanding of life for all citizens.
Roberta tells us that she met Kelly at a church group meeting after moving into a new community and felt an instant bond and connection, almost like there might be a purpose greater than originally thought. The present day need to understand the divisiveness in the nation in regard to political racial and religious ideals encouraged them to write The Fun of Living Together to give readers a better understanding of the needs of African Americans and other citizens so we may end the cycle of sorrow surrounding the injustice of slavery and realize opportunities for advancement for all people living under the laws of the founding fathers, The Constitution of the United States and move those words and ideas into real action and improvement for all.
Roberta goes on to tell us about Kelley Glover’s life which she sees as the embodiment of what every American of color can enjoy once we finally fix this problem. She is a music teacher and an entrepreneur, the daughter of a retired college president, two generations into the upper middle class. Roberta loves her because she is wise and funny and she understands her as perhaps no one else does, so when Kelly offered to help me write this book and keep me from making a fool of myself I invited her to be its co-author.
They both go on to say that Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. was the greatest American of the 20th century and wrote, “The United States of America is suffering its deepest divisions since the Civil War. The causes of the discord in our society seem to be varied and complex, Roberta and Kelly believe they come down to one core problem that will have to be addressed before anything much ever can improve, either in this nation or in the world. Bringing our country together is going to require every heart to the effort! And we are confident that it can be done if all of us will rally around three transformational American leaders.
Martin Luther King, Jr., was quoting Thomas Jefferson when he said in July of 1965:
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by God, Creator, with certain inalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” “This is a dream. It’s a great dream“.
The first saying we notice in this dream is an amazing universalism. It doesn’t say, ‘some men’; it says ‘all men.’ It doesn’t say ‘all white men’; it says ‘all men,’ which includes black men. It does not say ‘all Gentiles’; it says ‘all men,’ which includes Jews. It doesn’t say ‘all Protestants’; it says ‘all men,’ which includes Catholics. It doesn’t even say ‘all theists and believers’; it says ‘all men,’ which includes humanists and agnostics. “Never before in the history of the world has a sociopolitical document expressed in such profound, eloquent and unequivocal language the dignity and the worth of human personality. The American dream reminds us—and we should think about it anew on this Independence Day—that every man is an heir of the legacy of dignity and worth.”
Then on January 16, 2017, four days before his Inauguration, President Donald J. Trump took note of the holiday that bears Dr. King’s name with these words: “Today our nation pauses to honor a legend, an icon, and an American hero. The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. lifted up the conscience of our nation — a towering leader in his day, and a lasting inspiration for all generations to follow. Our Declaration declares that ‘all men are created equal,’ and Dr. King challenged our nation to live out that sacred truth: to banish the evils of bigotry, segregation and oppression from the institutions of society and the hearts of men. “His legacy of freedom is the true memorial to his life: no testimonial can pay better tribute than the faces of young children living out their dreams. But his work is not done: all around us today we see communities and schools falling behind and not sharing in the prosperity of American life. Each of us has a solemn obligation to ensure that no American is left behind — and that all Americans are fully included in the American Dream. When young Americans of color are left on the sidelines, our nation is denied a lifetime of contributions to this society — and when any of our American brothers and sisters is forced to live in fear, or poverty, or violence, it is setback for the entire nation.”
President Trump’s pledge is a challenge to us all that ties back to Dr. King’s civil rights struggle and then farther back, to the universal promises of freedom and equality of opportunity that were made at this nation’s founding. President Trump has vowed to make the American dream attainable for every young descendant of slavery, and in doing that he will need all our help.
Roberta’s point of view as Sheryl’s has changed since they thought the battles that Martin Luther King Jr. had fought had been won, but in recent days have seen so much unrest and dissatisfaction in the re-emerging civil rights conflicts in our national discourse. Sheryl shares with Roberta that as a young elementary school teacher only 20 years old when she began work in an inner city school in East New York, she was hard pressed to understand the poverty, drugs, lack of family involvement in the community and tried hard to improve conditions to the best of her ability. Later on returning to teaching after many years in business and developing spiritual awareness she saw that conditions had worsened and was sad to see how a welfare state had only lessened opportunities for these inner city people. Of course middle class blacks had been integrated into all areas of society quite successfully, but drug and gun infested communities without fathers and family structure were not faring as well.
Roberta mentions to Sheryl that around 1965, the government somehow suggested that African American women and their children would be taken care of by the government if the men were not in the home. So the men left when social workers came to visit and this began a divide for the African American family. Sheryl responds incredulously, “How could this have happened? What would be the advantage of breaking up the families much like what was done during the time of slavery.” Roberta says that like a cancer, this thinking filtered down into all communities and as a result divorce rates increased and there are more women raising children alone than ever before in history, creating the destruction of American family life. Statistics show that young people raised under these conditions often have more problems developing an emotionally healthy life.
Some quotes by past presidents and now remind us that America Is the template for a fair and honest government for the people and a guide to the rest of the world but corruption mismanagement and lack of clear focus on problems that still persist in the nation must be realized and corrected.
“Our scientific power has outrun our spiritual power. We have guided missiles and misguided men.” – Martin Luther King, Jr., Winner of the 1964 Nobel Peace Prize (1929-1968)
“There is nothing wrong with America that cannot be cured by what is right with America.” – Bill Clinton, 42nd president of the United States
“I like thinking big. If you’re going to be thinking anything, you might as well think big.” – Donald Trump, 45th president of the United States
Roberta writes…”Those that we used to think were dead(those in spirit) are telling us that unless we can arrest the negative course of the United States we face a worldwide decline into barbarism. What alarms me is that the beginnings of the chaotic events these elevated beings predict already are plain to see! Exotic diseases and declining birthrates; universal hatred and mistrust; religious strife and the concentration of power and wealth in the hands of just a few: carry forward present trends, and the desolate hell that those that we used to think were dead now tell us soon will overspread the earth can be readily foreseen. Also, poignantly, a perfect alternative future occasionally can be glimpsed in small, hopeful flames that flicker to life but soon die to embers. Either future is possible. But at the moment, the worst case is ascendant.”
Roberta writes, “For most of my life I have been whitebread-clueless about the problems faced by African-Americans. I have loved the words of Martin Luther King, Jr., but like most of us who are melanin-deficient, I have assumed that the battles that he fought had been won. It is only with Kelley’s help that I see that the terrible effects of American slavery are as much an immediate and desperate issue as they were a hundred and fifty years ago. I look now at little dark-skinned children, beautiful and bright and with eyes full of dreams, and I vow that their lives are going to be lived entirely beyond slavery’s stain. We are going to fix this now, for every child of every race.” To make our success at ending slavery possible, we emphatically ask that you not assign blame. Blaming people will just make our problems worse! Please assume that everything done until now was the fruit of well-meant efforts by people of kindness and good will, and work with us to understand the present well enough that we can fix these antiquated problems.
Kelly Glover’s story convinces us of the need to bring people in this country together. Kelly’s story and also learning that African-Americans have such a high rate of heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes? I’ve read that 47% of American Blacks have high blood pressure, as opposed to 27% of White Americans showed me the need for finding a cure to racism. Melanin-enriched Americans feel tired and think we’re tired. This racism, prejudice thing becomes an “I am” statement in our minds and bodies, and that energy affects everyone else because, guess what, people? We really are all one: black, brown, white, yellow, and red. We are all in this together, whether we want to realize it or not! We are only as strong as our weakest link, so “We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.” Martin Luther King has been right all along. It’s time that we finally listen to him!
KELLY’S STORY….”So, why am I tired, you ask? I can barely think of a time when the amount of melanin in my skin wasn’t a major part of my awareness, or when my presence didn’t make some people uncomfortable. I first became aware that my chocolate skin was seen as “less than” when I was four years old. We lived in an upper-middle-class Black neighborhood in Detroit, Michigan, and many of the people who lived around us were very light-skinned African-Americans. (There is a reason why this was true which I will explain later, since you may not be familiar with color and class within melanin-enriched communities in the U.S. and around the globe.) My dear friend, who I will call Bobby, used to play with me in my front yard almost every day. Whenever the occasion arose for me to go inside my home to get something for us to play with, my friend Bobby would disappear from my yard and would not return for the rest of the day. Puzzled, I asked my mother why Bobby always disappeared and wouldn’t come back, so she watched from inside to find out what was going on. Bobby’s mother, who was a very fair-skinned, naturally red-headed Black woman with freckles, came over to our yard, grabbed his hand, and said to her little boy, “I told you I don’t want you playing with that Black girl!” Translation: I don’t want my light-skinned Black son being with a dark-skinned Black girl. Where does this mindset come from? Why did Bobby’s mother not want her son to play with a darker shade of Black? S.L.A.V.E.R.Y. Vestiges of slavery. This is an example of what is called “colorism,” or internalized racism. At age five I entered kindergarten, and I had my first experiences with outright, blatant racism from White children and White teachers. At about that time I also learned that some Black people are “color-struck,” meaning they believe lighter skin is better than darker skin. Lighter skin means having more European ancestry, which makes a color-struck person feel as if their lighter shade is better than an individual with a darker shade.
Sheryl asks Roberta what she thinks about the left political group and many black activists interest in tearing down Confederate and other representations of American history and eliminating or rewriting the narrative out of U.S. history Sheryl says, “Of course there are things we are saddened by and now would not allow to happen, but can we just erase history for individualistic identity values?” It doesn’t make sense to deny, rewrite or erase history for any reason. You cannot write a new narrative that suits any particular group for their own purposes.
Sheryl goes on to say that she just interviewed Professor Onoso Imoagene author of Beyond Expectations Second Generation Nigerians in the United States and Britain who points out the different attitudes and values that African American citizens and black immigrants from other countries express about what they hope to achieve. How they perceive of themselves and other Americans is quite different than descendants of slavery. But spiritual people who live in the present creating what is needed now suggest strongly we do not dredge up memories that are painful and cause suffering. It does no good to live in the past, which is only a memory unless reactivated and stimulated to bring suffering and lack of progress into the present time. The key to resolving much of the antiquated pain of slavery, poverty, and inner city dysfunction would be to build family life once again with men included as fathers and education and community projects supporting hard work independence and efforts for ending a welfare state. Sheryl has seen many African Americans living fulfilled professional and personal lives. Just turn on a television and watch commercials, films and television series to see how integrated American life has become..Why not focus on this wonderful dynamic and let groups like Black Life Matter stop stoking the flames of discontent and racial divide. Only today Sheryl stopped at McDonalds and a smiling young African American young woman or perhaps a black of other descent said to her “I love your make-up and hair” Sheryl has blonde hair. She said it with a sincere smile and joy in making a human connection. That is America and American people at their best, not those marching, protesting, destroying groups like Antifa and other unhappy young people, anarchists and those calling others racists. Whether in the media or college campuses, ultra-liberals are doing the nation a disservice in undermining moral and civil values that maintain a free society and avoid chaos, riots and feeding the fire of anarchy and disrespect for American values. Implementing new solutions is the only way while avoiding the angry violent rhetoric by political parties unmotivated to end the divide.
Roberta and Kelly are confident that racial problems can get better on their own. Because Kelly feels that as she has grown mature she doesn’t deal with these childhood views many of them so contrived and misguided to inform her in the same manner as she did at age six, or even at age twenty-five for that matter and other people are making this connection to live in inner peace and awareness of life. Kelly and other mindful people of every color race and religion use spiritual tools to help me release things that have nothing to do with me. What other people think of me is really none of my business, so when racist things happen to me, I “go high” and soar even higher. I now view these kinds of negative experiences as opportunities to tap into my higher self and higher power, and I see them as only that. Experiences! I’m not saying that I never feel anger, hurt, resentments, etc., but I sure get over them faster now that I am older and wiser and have been dealing with these kinds of things for the past forty-four years!
Racism is not the reason for our racial problems. World conditions and the growing challenges: poverty, terrorism, economic disparities, disease, poor water conditions, climate change, diminishing and lack of resources, pollution, overpopulation, religious divides, gender/sexual issues, an aging population and a world that needs to work together for survival are the real issues. Political divide is a result of believing in different ways to deal with these common problems to benefit their contingencies and often not others…THESE ARE THE REAL PROBLEMS THAT LEAD TO RACISM, SEXISM, RELIGIOUSISM AND SO ON…. As we stop the verbal attacks and begin to work together like after recent national disasters Hurricane Sandy, Harvey Irma tornados earthquakes famines etc. we will be united in brotherhood for LIVING.
America without racial issues would look like perhaps Heaven on earth. America without racial issues would look like a divine state of cooperation, unity and oneness…heaven of higher emotions vibrations and love….We would be spiritually mature and able to live healthier more prosperous lives: energy could be used to create not bad feelings, but feelings of positivity, vitality and harmony.
Roberta says that emancipation never fully happened and Sheryl suggests that two movies she saw recently should be shown to all high school college students politicians indeed everyone. They are “The Free State of Jones” with Matthew McConaughey about injustices by confederate troops and Reconstruction after the Civil War, and “Loving” a movie of an interracial marriage in Virginia and the efforts of the state to deny the right to marry which eventually went to the Supreme Court for interpretation
Politicians have used race as a basis to grow their base and most of the time do not follow through on their actions. Money is appropriated for many wrong programs and grants…And because minced-words silliness is the current weapon that is being ineffectively tried against slavery, we are not going to be politically correct here. To be perfectly frank, words are not our problem! All the many times in a century and a half that we have condemned and destroyed people for using the word “nigger” have done nothing whatsoever to change the condition of descendants of America’s chattel slaves, so to hell with it now. Who cares what we say? All that will matter from this day forward will be what you and I will do.
Sheryl agrees that it has become harder and harder to listen to leaders make excuses and disregard serious issues like excessive violence and deaths in Chicago and many other heavily populated black communities, educational failures, and not talking about the real reasons for poverty, drug abuse and a welfare state that does not encourage families to succeed and move into the middle class. Sheryl says. “As an elementary school teacher for a time working in the inner city in New York I saw firsthand the problems facing a welfare based community…It is not slavery of the past any longer, but drugs, no fathers in the homes, no jobs, no training, and living off a system that was established to help people temporarily not sustain them and their children forever. Solutions may include: Community life and family training, job centers helping them find their talents, training them and placing them into work situations, subsidizing them to have a good standard of living if they are working, and cutting back on giving welfare for each and every pregnancy. Encourage payment for classes training and job performance.
Great quotes remind us of what we must do to accomplish freedom of our souls and hearts and love for all people so the world can be balanced….
“Whatever someone did to you in the past has no power over the present. Only you give it power.” – Oprah Winfrey, American media entrepreneur and talk show host
“I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear. “ – Martin Luther King, Jr., winner of the 1964 Nobel Peace Prize (1929-1968)
“We shall nobly save or meanly lose the last best hope of earth.” – Abraham Lincoln, 16th president of the United States (1809-1865)
Roberta let us know that re-branding the descendants of slavery is so important. Because what has been tried obviously has not worked in moving past the pain anger and potential for many African Americans to be fully conscious of their true value so they no longer live in the past. Hence groups like Black Lives Matter and thinking all police are hunting down black young men is thinking that has to change. We must never doubt the fact that everyone over the past century and a half who has thrown ideas and money at slavery’s symptoms has been trying to fix our problems! But nothing they have done has touched the fact of our botched emancipation hastily begun in the course of a disastrous civil war. And each of our ineffective attempts to address the results of that mistake has led to unforeseen consequences that have further stunted and twisted the tree of liberty on which so much depends.”
But we have some things now that our ancestors did not have. At last we think we understand what has been causing all the problems they were unable to solve; and we also have the benefit of seeing the negative results of some of the attempts made to fix them. We have run out of time and money and run out of excuses, so this time we had better get it right! And we can do that. So long as we are willing to look at the whole situation without emotion and without indulging in useless finger-pointing, we can at last complete the emancipation of America’s slaves and create a bright and hopeful new beginning for this nation, and then for the world. Albert Einstein is quoted as having said, “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results.” Reportedly he also said, “If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you always got.” We must let that sage’s wisdom be our guide! In any further attempts we make to address America’s problems, we must avoid repeating her past mistake
FIVE WAYS TO PROCEED
1. The only way to help people is to personally empower them. Empowering those who had been held in bondage so they could begin to live as free people would have been the essence of the neglected completion of their long-ago emancipation
2. Human dignity and self-worth must be protected and enhanced. We have learned by now how fragile and how essential is human dignity! Why has it taken us so long to arrive at the common-sense understanding that the disadvantaged people we are trying to help still are people, after all?
3. Intact families are essential to a healthy society. Here is something else that we should have known, but we have had to learn it again the hard way. Your authors both enjoy long-term marriages, as did our parents before us. We can testify that while no spouse is perfect, our lives and our ability to be productive have been much enhanced by our being married. And having children and elderly parents to care for is a beautiful gift! For Americans to be encouraged to live in families is the best way to build a stable and prosperous nation.
4. Children need both parents. Once we would have said that boys need their fathers, but there is evidence now that girls need fathers, too. For fifty years the United States has been conducting an experiment in rearing children in enforced single-parent homes, and much of what has happened is it is now prevalent throughout our culture and like a cancer affecting families of all races religions and cultures.
5. What is wrong with America now is the result of the failure of that experiment. So it isn’t only for the children’s sakes that we must give them back their fathers!
6. Restoring the central role of American fathers in their children’s lives is going to be essential if we are ever to repair this nation.
Our efforts to help those blighted by slavery must bring all Americans closer together. Another experiment that America has been conducting has been in trying to enhance the tribal feeling of the melanin-enriched among us as a way to make them feel better about themselves. Militant movements like Black Panthers and Black Lives Matter, and even more mainstream organizations like NAACP and The Urban League, all are examples of this idea. But of course, every effort to cleave thirteen percent of Americans even further from the rest of society not only has failed to make them feel better, but it also has tended to make the effects of modern slavery still worse.
Roberta and Kelly go on to discuss in the book President Johnson’s Great Society Change for blacks in the US and the full intention to complete emancipation for black descendants from a former slave relative began with President Kennedy. Then in November of 1963 President Kennedy is assassinated. In his grief, Bobby becomes determined to make finally ending slavery his brother’s core legacy, and he helps to shepherd a pair of bills through Congress. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 passes and is signed in July, and the Full Emancipation Act of 1964 becomes law in December. That second law is a harder sell. It is going to be expensive, but eventually it barely passes Congress when leading economists at Princeton and Yale release a joint study showing that the government will gain in additional tax revenues over the next fifty years more than twice what the law will cost to implement.
Still Roberta and Kelly both believe that once this country has begun the process of completing the abolition of slavery, other forms of bigotry will lessen as well. That singular vast and complex problem has for generations so preoccupied us that it has hardened our hearts against others who also seem to be a bit different from what we envision to be the American mainstream. Let’s look at some of these groups of people who also have been victims of American bigotry (which, we remind you, is the forming of opinions about others based upon incomplete information): Asian Immigrants Spanish-Speaking Americans Native Americans. Jews the LGBTQ population.
Still, Roberta and Kelly are confident that American slavery can be ended in the span of just a few decades if we will educate and altogether empower every one of perhaps a generation and a half of slavery’s youngest descendants. What we’ll be doing is cutting slavery’s tail by creating thirty years worth of births in which everyone descended from slavery will become a well-educated potential achiever. No exceptions. We will have to empower them all!
1. Integrate the Full Emancipation Act With State Educational Voucher Programs.
2. Work Out Deals With Colleges and Universities
A savvy Trump Administration can ensure that every college that gets Full Emancipation Act funds is teaching these children what they will need to learn in order to succeed in life while not wasting money in the process. Sheryl suggests that indeed our children are not aware of much of the history current events civil graces and needs of our times and improvement in education policy needs to address changes for all levels of education.
Roberta Grimes and Kelly Glover address one of the most important topics of modern time in their book The Fun of Living Together which will move us in the right direction for being able to accept all people as simply energy beings having a physical life emanating from the same creative force of Universal Source and in understanding that premise it will become impossible to use the labels and judgments of mind or ego consciousness. We will truly express the values of heart or soul energy in love and compassionate for Life beyond racial religious or cultural differences. The time is now for this realization and without it we cannot survive.
In summarizing today’s episode of “Healing From Within” I share with you a portion of “I have a Dream Speech” August 1963 by Martin Luther King Jr. which never fails to elicit tearfulness from me in its beauty and truth, “I have a dream that one day this nature will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed. “We hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal. I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood. I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.
Roberta and Sheryl would have you focus on the many people you interact with everyday in your neighborhoods, at work, on the playground, in the bagel store, people of all shapes sizes and colors who stand by your side. Perhaps, like me you say, “Hello” and share a moment of human divine interaction as we are all One in energy and Spirit, and in that moment you feel comfortable, not separated or divided, not thinking of what you can receive from them, but just giving and being human. It is happening everywhere, despite the chaos and confusion of these world changes, and in the end, like the beginning we will be United.Today’s Guest