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Opinion: Real problem is poor personal choices, not racism
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People take to downtown Gainesville Sunday, May 31, 2020, on the second night of protests in Gainesville that blocked traffic and resulted in vandalism on the square. - photo by Scott Rogers

Flattening the curve on racism as The Times asks: There is no curve to flatten. Have you not noticed? Racism is what is perceived by a minority who refuses to step up to the plate and take advantage of all the advantages available to it. 

Getting left behind, as minorities tout, is of one’s own making when one continues to live on the plantation. Being cared for is the mantra of the minority. Welfare checks, food stamps, subsidies, low rent for “special groups,” minority hiring, support for multiple babies, female-dominated family life for those who have “pop-in” fathers, unstable family life — on and on it goes, but still living on the plantation and being cared for in the 21st century after having every opportunity possible.

This is not racism, it’s the history of perpetuation for a way of life that keeps those behind who choose to stay behind.

Do a little research instead of rioting and looting in the name of a man you never heard of until two weeks ago and you will find a huge number of successful black names: professionals in every walk of life. Educated and well-known entrepreneurs who have become wealthy by hard work, common sense and dedication to a constructive purpose. Industry brains who have made their marks in numbers of corporate America positions. The success is here for the taking; a strong study ethic and hard work never held back anyone. Only the “poor pitiful me, I’ve been held back” attitude will kill success.

The Hispanic community is a minority that is passing by blacks, and it’s being permitted to happen. The undocumented as well as those here legally are taking advantage of every offered opportunity. Their participation in many levels of community is a sign they are looking forward. Hispanic work ethic is very strong as they have taken Black jobs while Blacks have let this happen. Hispanic family structure is also very strong.

Recently, I heard an interview with a black man from Texas. I wish I could recall his name; he was such a plus. He grew up in a needy part of Atlanta, he took advantage of every opportunity offered in education as well as employment. He is now a multi-million-dollar successful businessman and ripped apart his black brothers in the interview for their slack attitude. This man, like so many other black success stories, had no desire to live from the support of others. The old phrase “we cannot all be chiefs but we can be successful Indians” was his focus.

There is no racism curve; it is all self-induced. Letting someone lead you into violence, destruction and despicable acts that accomplish nothing is not where success begins. There is only the personal desire to make one’s life better by hard work and focused determination. Success begins with you and your desire to move beyond those who choose to remain on the plantation.

Howard Peters

Gainesville

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