I wanted you to know about Dr. Randall Kennedy speaking in Bozeman, Montana

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As most of you know I live in a state that is 98 percent white, this is my home and I love Montana. I want to share something with this board and ask for your prayers. Dr. Randall Kennedy the author of of “N-word: The Strange Career of a Troublesome Word,” Dr. Kennedy book contents the word is part of pop culture and thus has no meaning, as a matter of fact, it purported that he is loved by white supremacist groups. He is black and conservative. For further info do a search on the internet, and read about incidents that have happened at campuses after his lecture. I am a proponent of free speech for our country is founded on these princeples.

My organization has worked hard fighting white supremacist groups in Montana as has the people of this state. Dr. Kennedy will give his speech on wednesday and fly out the next day, it will be those of us who live here that will have to deal with the consequences of giving permission to use the N' word or that the civil rights movement, was nothing but a legal movement and should only be seen as that.

There are 70 black athletes at montana state university, they are from urban areas will possibly targets by the KKK or others on the campus that will buy into an ideology that N word is nothing to be upset over, we have walked this road before and those of us that are social activists are co-ordinating our efforts, to make sure our black students will be protected and that there will be extra security. My daughter and I will be there sitting in the front row, as a reminder that the ame church will continue the battle against racism,

Intellectual discourse is fine, but there are consequences. While Dr. Kennedy goes back to the academy in Harvard, we will have to deal with any fall out. Am I bracing for the worst, NO! And I am preparing for spiritual intervention. You bet! I do solicit your prayers. Our church will honor Dr. King on Monday by co-sponsoring an anual celebration with the Library. It will be an interesting week, other peace groups will have a celebration on tuesday to highling Dr. Kings role in uniting all people.

Again I do encourage you to do a search for "Dr. Randall Kennedy" and read for yourself. Keep us in prayer, thanks

-- Anonymous, January 17, 2004


I hope you and Danielle can attend Professor Kennedy's lecture. Kennedy is an outstanding legal theorist and his research has made great contributions in the area of American jurisprudence. I have attended lectures by Kennedy and read several of his books including the one you cite in your post. His law review article in Yale Law Review, circa 1996, about jury nullification is must reading for anyone interested in the biased jury outcomes. Several of his close friends and law colleagues implored him not to write the book in question because of the incendiary title (Derrick Bell in particular) and the alleged irresponsible actions of the author. The book is nonetheless important because it is written from a legal perspective and in addition, offers an etymological focus about the meaning of the word. You make mention that Kennedy is "black and conservative". I'm sure if you asked him about this journalistic caricature (conservative) his response will be interesting since he clerked for Thurgood Marshall and has presented the definitive case against racial profiling. Last year, in an exchange with AME Pastor and lawyer Larry Coleman, I made reference to Kennedy's controversial book. An excerpt is provided below:

"I am greatly appreciative of the two books you have recommended for further reading. I look foward to reading these books after I get caught up on some other reading obligations. One book which I will be completing sometime today is a provocative book written by one of your NBA colleagues Randall Kennedy (Prof. of Law @ Harvard). The book of course is Nigger: The strange career of a troublesome word. I trust Rev. Fisher will not exercise his editorial discretion and delete my response because of Kennedy's preference to use the complete spelling and not the p.c. shibboleth, 'N-word'. As ususal Parson Coleman you are a gentleman and a scholar. And while you may vigorously dissent about your membership in the 'Negro Aristocracy' and all of the sociological implications that the term connotes, I fully understand. As the old saying goes, some of my best friends are members of the Aristocracy :-) QED

-- bill dickens (dickensb@comcast.net), March 14, 2003.

-- Anonymous, January 17, 2004

We will be at the lecture. I sent an email to Bishop Bryant and my presiding elder to let them know what is going on. The T.V stations and newspapers are already picking up on the story and having a field day with the book title. Even the poster for the lecture has the word NIGGER in big bold letters, so that is basically the only word you see on the poster.

I have not met Dr. Kennedy obviously, but I wish the university had asked another speaker, I am deeply concerned. For those living in other parts of the country you have no idea what we have been through in last several years. Three years ago a gospel group from harlem came to perform in billings, montanat and the KKK was in front of the theater waiting for them, it got so bad that the police had to escort the bus with the singers out of town. And they were singers. Many white people came out to help the singers.

Now we have Dr. Kennedy coming, for him it will be an intellectual discourse but for us, it means dealing with the KKK again. As I have said before freedom of speech is our right as americans, but their are consequences, I am so proud that peace groups in town are organizing to have another king celebration on tuesday, to keep the momentum going that our town will not tolerate racists slurs, or white supremacist groups.

In the fall several of our black athletes were attacked in a bar by a group with the aryan nation, who called them the n word and beat them over the head. Dr. King's work is not done.

I am proud of the people of Montana that have said no! to these groups and refuse the designation of the "white promise land" they have spoken up and risked their lives. Yes the ame church will be there on wednesday.

-- Anonymous, January 18, 2004

Rev. Rogers:

I will pray for you and Danielle this week as well as the players in Bozeman. Keep fighting the good fight and God bless.

-- Anonymous, January 18, 2004

While looking for information regarding Dr. Kennedy's appearance in Bozeman on the Bozeman Chronicle website, I ran across this interesting piece of information. It seems our Sister in Montana is keeping the faith.

You Go Girl or something like that Be Blessed

Events at the Bozeman public Library set for MLK Day

From the Bozeman Public Library

Although the Bozeman Public Library will be closed on Monday, Jan. 19, the Library will sponsor a celebration in honor of the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. at 7 p.m. in the Library meeting room. The Rev. Denise Rogers, the keynote speaker, will talk about "On the Road From Birmingham to Bozeman: Dr. King's Legacy Lives On." Jason Jimmerson and Alan Gallant will talk about the history of AmeriCorps and their experiences in this national volunteer program, followed by music provided by Andrew Grosmiller. All ages are invited to this celebration. For more information, please call the Library at 582- 2404. NEW BOOKS:

-- Anonymous, January 19, 2004

Rev. Rogers opines -

"I have not met Dr. Kennedy obviously, but I wish the university had asked another speaker, I am deeply concerned. For those living in other parts of the country you have no idea what we have been through in last several years."

I'm somewhat curious. If you have not met the distinguished Harvard Law Professor, how can you reach a conclusion about his personal beliefs and or motives? I thought the wise saying "Don't judge a book by its cover" was an admonition against premature conclusions absent full informaion. Also, those of us who live in the Deep South can indeed relate to the poisonous rhetoric spewed by racial hate groups. My friends and family from Texas, Mississippi, Louisiana, Alabama, Florida and Georgia are still on the battlefield for racial equality. QED

-- Anonymous, January 19, 2004

Hello Rev. Rogers,

I will be praying for you as you deal with this black racist. Yes, that's right I said black racist. There are too many of us black folk who dont't love ourselves enough and hate ourselves too much. The word "nigger" has a painful legacy in this country. It was used to describe Africans for the express purpose of dehumanizing them. This black intellectual was relatively obsure before this book was published. As I suspected, white America is amused when a highly educated black person engages in this type of demeaning behavior. The author understands that he has to get a catchy title to sell his books. So hence this charade.

If those black intellectuals were to attempt to publish books like The Nature of Prejudice by Gordon W. Alport 1970 or attempt to do objective studies on white racism against blacks in this country, the researh money for these projects would not be available. Furthermore, the white dominated media would not be interested in publishing it.

Black people were tortured in this country from 1619 to 1863 with legalized slavery. Jefferson and Lincoln both said that if God is a just God, He will surely punish America for its crimes against black people. Some of the slaves accepted Jesus and continued to pray and in the fullness of time, God punished this nation with the Civil War.

I will pray that those black racist who are so self-serving in pursuit of the almighty dollar will come to love themselves and others like themselves. I heard the Rev. Clifton Davis who is primarilly known for his role as the minister in AMEN speak yesterday at Fifth Baptist Church in Richmond, Va. He used the 27th Psalm for his text and he implored us to look for the Light in times of trouble and remember that the same God who brought you from the past will take you to the future when you follow the Light!!!


-- Anonymous, January 19, 2004

I salute your relatives that are still on the battle field. But one of the advantages that they have on the battle field is a place to retreat if need me, and also the support of the NAACP, other black churches, themselves.

As I have said previously, I know what I and other are dealing with, this is not an intellectual discourse, I do not know if you personally have been targeted for death by the klan, or wonder if it is safe to leave your home to run to the store and leave your teen age child home. But there are many on this board that do and I thank them for their support.

I have been dealing with these groups for 12 years and I know how they work as do law enforcements, and just so you know I am equally concerned about Dr. Kennedy and his safety. And will make sure he too knows that there are those in the community he can turn to.

The bottom line is that to these groups they do care if you are a black intellectual from Harvard, to them you are the N'word that you have come to town to say the word is an important part of pop culture.

So, yes I will be at his lecture, and yes i will be watching his back also.

God called me to Montana and I love living here and yes I have been in contact with other activists in the south and they have been great friends. But the reality is that many of these groups have moved to the pacific northwest for it has been designated as the "White promise land" for their is such a large population of white people, many are christian identity groups, aryan nation. They have and are recruiting young people. And those of us in the ame church in the pacific northwest are fighting the battle that our elders fought in the south. We thank God for them, for they are our role models.

Again to those who have written and are praying, thank you so much!

-- Anonymous, January 19, 2004

jazzman, I was writing my post as you wrote yours and when I mentioned "I salute your relatives" I was referring to the post Bill wrote.

Thank you so much for your kind and accurate word. There is group of black intellectuals that is causing discussions of concern among many of those in the civil rights field.

Blacks who have begun to attack their own race under the guise of intellectual freedom and academic discernment, and yes they are making money off of their books. I received an email yesterday from a journalist who has been following this phenomanen.

When they are spoken about they say, "the same things that white racist say about black people being on welfare, getting rid of affirmative action, and then cry fould when we respond by saying they are black conservatives.

It is time to re-evaluste who are the friends of civil rights for all people based on their actions and deeds, and not only on their skin color. For there are black people today that unfortunately will sell us out so that they will fit in. The sad thing is that they do not realize they too are hated by those who hate all minorities.

God has his hand all of that is to traspire and it is not co- incidence that there is an ame church in the town where Dr. Kennedy will speak.

Even members of my congregation where outraged that Dr. Kennedy is coming and that his poster with the N'Word two feet big was plastered all over town. Thank God, there were store owners who refused to put them up.

I am not going to be quiet and I will speak out when those who oppress people are marketing their wares no matter what color they are. Thank you Jazzman, and to the others on the board who understand. Please pray for our black athletes, who will have to live in the dorms long after Dr. Kennedy leaves. Pray for their parents who did not want their children to come here to play sports, pray for those of us who are speaking out that are families are protected. Pray for our great denomination that has walked this road before and lends us support. Thank you.

-- Anonymous, January 19, 2004

Rev. Rogers:

It's funny how people can be on the same wave length. I was just reading Martin Luther King's 'Letter from a Birmingham Jail." Here are his thoughts on blacks who would deny the cause of advancement, white moderates and the white church.

DRAINED BLACK SOMEBODINESS "You speak of our activity in Birmingham as extreme. At fist I was rather disappointed that fellow clergymen would see my nonviolent efforts as those of an extremist. I began thinking about the fact that stand in the middle of two opposing forces in the Negro community. One is a force of complacency, made up in part of Negroes who, as a result of long years of oppression, are so drained of self- respect and a sense of "somebodiness" that they have adjusted to segregation; and in part of a few middle class Negroes who, because of a degree of academic and economic security and because in some ways they profit by segregation, have become insensitive to the problems of the masses. The other force is one of bitterness and hatred, and it comes perilously close to advocating violence. It is expressed in the various black nationalist groups that are springing up across the nation, the largest and best- known being Elijah Muhammad's Muslim movement. Nourished by the Negro's frustration over the continued existence of racial discrimination, this movement is made up of people who have lost faith in America, who have absolutely repudiated Christianity, and who have concluded that the white man is an incorrigible "devil."

WHITE MODERATES: "I must make two honest confessions to you, my Christian and Jewish brothers. First, I must confess that over the past few years I have been gravely disappointed with the white moderate. I have almost reached the regrettable conclusion that the Negro's great stumbling block in his stride toward freedom is not the White Citizen's Councilor or the Ku Klux Klanner, but the white moderate, who is more devoted to "order" than to justice; who prefers a negative peace which is the absence of tension to a positive peace which is the presence of justice; who constantly says: "I agree with you in the goal you seek, but I cannot agree with your methods of direct action"; who paternalistically believes he can set the timetable for another man's freedom; who lives by a mythical concept of time and who constantly advises the Negro to wait for a "more convenient season." Shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will. Lukewarm acceptance is much more bewildering than outright rejection."

THE WHITE CHURCH: When I was suddenly catapulted into the leadership of the bus protest in Montgomery, Alabama, a few years ago, I felt we would be supported by the white church felt that the white ministers, priests and rabbis of the South would be among our strongest allies. Instead, some have been outright opponents, refusing to understand the freedom movement and misrepresenting its leader era; an too many others have been more cautious than courageous and have remained silent behind the anesthetizing security of stained-glass windows.

In spite of my shattered dreams, I came to Birmingham with the hope that the white religious leadership of this community would see the justice of our cause and, with deep moral concern, would serve as the channel through which our just grievances could reach the power structure. I had hoped that each of you would understand. But again I have been disappointed.

I have heard numerous southern religious leaders admonish their worshipers to comply with a desegregation decision because it is the law, but I have longed to hear white ministers declare: "Follow this decree because integration is morally right and because the Negro is your brother." In the midst of blatant injustices inflicted upon the Negro, I have watched white churchmen stand on the sideline and mouth pious. irrelevancies and sanctimonious trivialities. In the midst of a mighty struggle to rid our nation of racial and economic injustice, I have heard many ministers say: "Those are social issues, with which the gospel has no real concern." And I have watched many churches commit themselves to a completely other worldly religion which makes a strange, on Biblical distinction between body and soul, between the sacred and the secular.

I have traveled the length and breadth of Alabama, Mississippi and all the other southern states. On sweltering summer days and crisp autumn mornings I have looked at the South's beautiful churches with their lofty spires pointing heavenward. I have beheld the impressive outlines of her massive religious-education buildings. Over and over I have found myself asking: "What kind of people worship here? Who is their God? Where were their voices when the lips of Governor Barnett dripped with words of interposition and nullification? Where were they when Governor Walleye gave a clarion call for defiance and .hatred? Where were their voices of support when bruised and weary Negro men and women decided to rise from the dark dungeons of complacency to the bright hills of creative protest?"

Yes, these questions are still in my mind. In deep disappointment I have wept over the laxity of the church. But be assured that my tears have been tears of love. There can be no deep disappointment where there is not deep love. Yes, I love the church. How could I do otherwise? l am in the rather unique position of being the son, the grandson and the great- grandson of preachers. Yes, I see the church as the body of Christ. But, oh! How we have blemished and scarred that body through social neglect and through fear of being nonconformists.

Before closing I feel impelled to mention one other point in your statement that has troubled me profoundly. You warmly commended the Birmingham police force for keeping "order" and "preventing violence." I doubt that you would have so warmly commended the police force if you had seen its dogs sinking their teeth into unarmed, nonviolent Negroes. I doubt that you would so quickly commend the policemen if .you were to observe their ugly and inhumane treatment of Negroes here in the city jail; if you were to watch them push and curse old Negro women and young Negro girls; if you were to see them slap and kick old Negro men and young boys; if you were to observe them, as they did on two occasions, refuse to give us food because we wanted to sing our grace together. I cannot join you in your praise of the Birmingham police department.

I wish you had commended the Negro sit-inners and demonstrators of Birmingham for their sublime courage, their willingness to suffer and their amazing discipline in the midst of great provocation. One day the South will recognize its real heroes. They will be the James Merediths, with the noble sense of purpose that enables them to face Jeering, and hostile mobs, and with the agonizing loneliness that characterizes the life of the pioneer. They will be old, oppressed, battered Negro women, symbolized in a seventy-two-year-old woman in Montgomery, Alabama, who rose up with a sense of dignity and with her people decided not to ride segregated buses, and who responded with ungrammatical profundity to one who inquired about her weariness: "My fleets is tired, but my soul is at rest." They viii be the young high school and college students, the young ministers of the gospel and a host of their elders, courageously and nonviolently sitting in at lunch counters and willingly going to jail for conscience' sake. One day the South will know that when these disinherited children of God sat down at lunch counters, they were in reality standing up for what is best in the American dream and for the most sacred values in our Judaeo-Christian heritage, thereby bringing our nation back to those great wells of democracy which were dug deep by the founding fathers in their formulation of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. "

Words of truth for a people of truth.

-- Anonymous, January 19, 2004

I don't normally copy and post here but I thought we needed to see the announcement of Dr. Kennedy's engagement: MSU University News ---------------------------------------------------------------------- ---------- National expert on race in America speaks Jan. 21 in honor of Martin Luther King's life January 15, 2004 -- by Carol Schmidt MSU News Service

A Harvard Law School professor and author who has written extensively about the role of race in American life will speak at an Associated Students of Montana State University event commemorating Martin Luther King, Jr., set for 7:30 p.m. Jan. 21 in the SUB Ballrooms on the MSU campus.

Randall Kennedy, author of the bestseller "Nigger: The Strange Career of a Troublesome Word," will lecture on "The Race Line in American Life." The lecture is free and open to the public.

Kennedy has become a leading voice in the study of race and ethnicity issues in America. His lectures open an important dialogue about the role that race plays in America's social, political, cultural and academic life. His speeches challenge audiences to confront their own racial prejudices and stereotypes.

Kennedy is also the author of "Interracial Intimacies," which explores the topic of interracial dating and marriage.

The ASMSU Campus Entertainment, the Office of Student Activities and the Diversity Awareness Office sponsor Kennedy's appearance. Contact: Patty Inskeep (406) 994-3591

I suggest that we may be "rushing" to judgement in characterizing Dr. Kennedy as racist, basically because he wrote a history of the n- word. No one hates the use of and to hear that word spoken more than I do, but he told the true history of that word in his book. I suggest that we are hanging the messenger because we don't like the message.

Take note of who is sponsoring Dr. Kennedy and the fact that there is no charge to hear him. I will be looking forward to Rev Rogers report from the scene.

I would also ask that we visit The Bozeman Chronicle website (http://www.bozemanchronicle.com/)and see what they have to say about this incident. The lead story tells of ateacher at the Bozeman High School who used her own funds to purchase Slave Shackles to show to the students in her class to demonstrate the horrors of slavery. This teacher does not appear to be black. Also you will find an article:

"King's birthday good time to reflect on sacrifices, struggles"

By KARIN RONNOW, Chronicle Staff Writer From the content of the article, I conclude that this woman is black, but you judge for yourself.

BE Blessed

-- Anonymous, January 19, 2004

Jazzman -

Is your opinion that Professor Kennedy is a "black racist" and engages in self hate based on the title of the book in question? Can you share what evidence you have that supports this finding? I find it somewhat ironic that on the day we observe the birth of MLK, Jr. there appears to be a thinly disguised form of intolerance directed at an individual few know personally or professionally. I indicated earlier that the book offers an etymological and legal framework for understanding the racial epithet in question. Please explain how that constitutes the author being a "black racist". About 3-4 years ago cultural critic William J. Bennett and a prominent black female Philly activist (her name momentarily escapes me) openly criticized the prevalent use of "nigga" in hip hop lyrics and the misogynist and degrading attitudes about black women expressed by artists like Tupac, Snoop Dogg, NWA, etc. Are these artists "black racists" also? While the black church largely chose to stand along the sideline and not join forces with Bennett and his colleague, the hip hop industry continues to flourish thereby permitting many blacks to engage in a form of linguistic hypocrisy by using the term "internally" but rejecting it in inter-racial discourse. Eliminating the use of all racial epithets among all racial groups should be the goal, not simply targeting a scholar's work and making statements based on innuendo and not corroborated evidence. That goal is not mere discourse on intellectual musings but a practical standard that Dr. King would find agreement and approval. QED

-- Anonymous, January 19, 2004

The reason I brought the topic up in the first place is because Montana state university is bringing Dr. Kennedy in to celebrate Dr. King. The holiday was not celebrated in Montana until 1992.And In 1993 I organized the first MLK celebration at the university.

Below is an excerpt from the Black Commentator July 2002. One of Dr. Kennedy's colleague Dr.Tilson who was the first tenured black professor at Harvard shares his thoughts" here is the excerpt.

"Harvard Law professor Randall Kennedy, a specialist in telling white people exactly what he thinks they want to hear, continues to ride high on the Best Sell-Out lists, his bank account swelled by proceeds from "Nigger: The Strange Career of a Troublesome Word." Kennedy's own career appears to be based on playing the role of surrogate to white racists, who fear to mouth the dreaded N-word themselves, but love reading about it from the perspective of a Black man who hates African Americans even more than they do.

Dr. Martin Kilson, professor of political science and the first Black to achieve tenure at Harvard, in 1968, brilliantly dissected Kennedy's pathological profiteering in the June 27 issue of this publication. Kilson's diagnosis - the dictionary defines the word to mean, "the art or act of identifying a disease from its signs and symptoms" - is that "Kennedy's core purpose in producing 'Nigger' was to assist White Americans in feeling comfortable with using the epithet 'nigger.'"

Kilson suggested that Kennedy was guilty of inciting white bucks to run amuck in the Ivy League. We sent out a news release:

Dr. Kilson blamed Kennedy for a series of Harvard campus postings of e-mail messages containing the racial slur. The incidents provoked demonstrations by hundreds of students, led by the Harvard Black Law Students Association, in March and April. Kilson said the events "were set in motion…by the intellectually bizarre idea propagated in this book….

Kennedy "has no sense of responsibility for the vicious racial fires he has cynically ignited," said Dr. Kilson, He described Kennedy's book as "tantamount to tossing a match at a gasoline-soaked building."

The Kilson release got lots of attention, including coverage among the only media that Kennedy respects: the big white press. Kennedy clearly does not consider himself answerable in any respect to other Black people, but he does answer the phone when the Boston Globe calls. Staff writer Stephanie Stoughton reported, July 8:

After reading Kilson's critique, Kennedy called it "silly, inaccurate, poorly researched, a sad commentary on Professor Kilson." Among his issues with the latest criticism is Kilson's assumption that there is a connection between Kennedy's book and the [Harvard 'nigger'] incidents. "Let's suppose there is a relationship," he said. "So what? So I'm not supposed to write a book because someone might put it to bad use?"

Poorly researched? Kennedy is one of those "public intellectuals" who act the fool in the full light of day. Dr. Kilson read the book and a number of related articles in the New York Times and the Boston Globe. He quotes the author's words. Kennedy damns himself with his own voice. Kennedy flatters himself by imagining that his book is heavy lifting.

What Kennedy really objects to is Dr. Kilson's clear exposition of where Kennedy fits within the shameful ranks of those who make careers out of defaming their fellow African Americans. He and the rest of his cash-and-carry crowd should prepare for much more of the same medicine. Kilson's contribution to The Black Commentator was excerpted from his "The Making of Black Intellectuals: Studies on the African-American Intelligentsia," a work of two decades that will be published early next year.

In this grand, two-volume study, Kilson shows Kennedy to be a dim light on the desolate right rim of the constellation of Black political thought.

Or, as a reader named Von offered in an e-mail to :

Mr. Randall is a selfish fool, and making a lot of money at the expense of his people and his heritage. He's truly playing into the hand of the many whites who have been dying to use the "N" word. Whites will now think it's politically correct.

The NAACP's Pre-emptive Cyber-Strike

The goal of treachery is to surprise the victim. Certainly, the NAACP could not have predicted, back in 1999, that the new century's most aggressive popularizer of the word "nigger" would be a Black law professor from Harvard University. Rather, the civil rights organization had its eyes on the usual suspects among white hate groups when it registered nigger.com as a domain name, along with other permutations of the word.

"We wanted to make sure these domain names would not be used for derogatory purposes," NAACP director of communications John White told Wired News, three years ago. "We are the oldest civil rights organization and it is within our charter to reduce hate in whatever way we can."

The Anti-Defamation League used a similar strategy to deny Jew- haters access to domains such as kike.com, .net and .org. However, ADL spokeswoman Elizabeth Coleman admitted that any attempt to corner the market on hate names amounts to "a symbolic gesture."

-- Anonymous, January 19, 2004

The following is link to Dr. Randal Kennedy's response to Dr. Kilson's commentary. It will also link to Dr. Kilson's response and the Black Commentator's response. http://blackcommentator.org/10_1.html

Note that this was published in Issue 10 of the Black Commentator dated August 2002. I suggest that we read both sides of the story.

-- Anonymous, January 20, 2004

Martin Kilson, Cornel West's undergrad mentor, has been a leading critic and scholar at Harvard for a long time. One of his representative book publications is Crisis and Change in the Negro Ghetto (1973). Kilson's scholarly attacks are legendary and they include in addition to R. Kennedy, Henry Louis Gates, Rev. Eugene Rivers, Evelyn Higginbotham and other Harvard luminaries. Prof. Kilson and Harold Gibson share many similarities :-)

Since reading suggestions appear to be the new direction of this thread let me offer a few as well. I would first recommend interested parties to read Kennedy's two books, Nigger:The Strange Career of a Troublesome Word (2002) and Race, Crime & Law (1997). Secondly, I would also recommend Dick Gregory's autobiography which is titled- Nigger. It's interesting that Gregory's autobiography was warmly recieved by the black intelligentsia (I don't recall Kilson writing a scathing review) while Kennedy's is condemned as self- serving and providing fodder for racist white America. Sure sounds like censorship to me. QED

-- Anonymous, January 20, 2004

It seems to be the "crab principle". When one crab decides to get out of the bucket, the other crabs gang up and drag him back in. When someone like Dr. Kennedy or myself for that matter decide it is time to stop fighting white folk use the system, the ones who are stuck in time (the civil rights era) gang up to drag us back down. It is time for us to stop looking for excuses and start doing for ourselves. Next thing you know someone will be demanding reparations for slavery! Woops I bit my tongue!

Be Blessed

-- Anonymous, January 20, 2004

In my original post my concern is not with Dr. Kennedy's title of his book, he has the right of free speech, but the effects his speech may possibly have on those living in a community where he exercises his free speech.

It is another ball game here in Montana. And yesterday in a new report from the Montana Human rights network, it was reported that hate crimes are up in Montana to native americans and blacks, and that the work of MLK is even more crucial in a state like Montana.

I am not opposed to intellectual discourse, for I too am a scholar, but I know the conditions of the state I live in.

Again I do ask prayer, I shared the commentary to show what happened at Harvard. We are not crabs that want to crawl back in the bucket, but human beings who want to live and create a safe environment for those who live here.

No one is trying to disway one's political views and to the contrary, this board has been very tolerant, so I do not understand Rev. Paris remark about the crabs, the persons you need to tell to get over slavery are the white supremacist groups for we are not going back.

I do invite you and Bill to visit Montana this summer and see the work the ame church is doing here to insure equality for all people. Some clergy in our denomination have contacted me personally prior to this post and are coming out to help this summer with revivals and encouragement. One church in NYC is coming, a church in L.A

I am greatly encouraged by those who join us in the fight. Again thank all of you for your prayers, the police is also concerned about the visit.

-- Anonymous, January 20, 2004

Rev. Paris,

Just curious...why would you place yourself in the same category as Dr. Randall Kennedy?

-- Anonymous, January 20, 2004

Rev Rogers,

I will be praying and believe it is definitely needed. I have read a bit about Dr. Kennedy and his book. I cannot call him racist, in fact I think he believes what he wrote. Unfortunately his ideology is either pre-mature or totally not going to happen.

He admits in an interview that he knows the title of his book would be and eye cather, and hopes it will cause people to buy. It is apparently working for him. Was that a good judgment call? Sometimes people just think "It's All About The Benjamin." The aftermath of these judgement calls could have been thought about, but on a scale for prioritizing things, didn't rank with the Mighty Dollar. And because of freedom of speech he had the right to use that title. "All things are law, but not expedient."

I also read there are people who read the book and say it is a good book and written well, but they felt they needed to hide the title.

My concern is the 2 foot postor used for advertisement in a place that is known for racial violence. You have to wonder the motive and mindset of those doing the posting. For a racists person, the poster is just like honey to a bee.

Dr. Kenneday may deliver a wonderful speech, but there is a tension going on as we speak because of these posters. To me the advertisement is distasteful. As the people gather to hear this man, you have to wonder what drew them. What will they expect to hear this man say? I pray for his safety as well, because with that title, I'm sure there are those that will be there expecting him to think just like them. .

If he has to explain the title of his book to a racist group, and they undermind his explanation, by throwing around the word ignorantly, the tomorrows in Bozeman might be an ugly affair.

Carmen Buchanan

-- Anonymous, January 20, 2004

Meant to say "All things are lawful but not expediant."

-- Anonymous, January 20, 2004

My beloved sister Carmen, God bless you! For understanding my concern and keeping us in prayer. We had such a beautiful and moving Dr. King celebration yesterday. The day was devoted to service in Bozeman, and americorp and the boys and girls clubs got volunteers in town to make a community wide mural of what Dr. King's dream would look like. I cried when I saw that the white children had drawn pictures of black kids in the mural for most of them have not seen black children. They love Dr. King, last night at our celebration, people signed up to volunteer at other projects in the city throughout the year. And we took a donation for the food bank since the war on poverty was so important to Dr. King.

Many in the audience shared with me their disappointment that Dr. kennedy was coming for they did not feel his coming reflected the true spirit of Dr.Kings work.

Our celebration did make the news last night. Another town in Butte Montana built homes for Native americans in honor of Dr. King and that too was moving, for the native americans are treated so badly.

No matter what happens tomorrow, we know God is with the righteous, and we are determined in our community to stick together and keep the focus on the work Dr. King started. There will be another celebration tonight for Dr. King, and because of Dr. Kennedy's visit, there is a strong possibility other peace groups across the state are going to keep lifting Dr. King up.

Again Carmen, thank you for understanding, and my community is smart enough to know it is about Dr. Kennedy making money.

-- Anonymous, January 20, 2004

C. Delores Tucker is the black female civil rights leader and outspoken critic of hip-hop culture I was thinking of in an earlier post. Her crusade against derogatory and demeaning lyrics (explicilty sexual and racial) should engender more support from black churches but too many shun joining her noble cause. QED

-- Anonymous, January 20, 2004

I noticed that Dr. Kilson and the Black Commentary both resorted to name-calling and personal attacks against Dr. Kennedy. At some point in time we MUST respect each other enough to disagree without being disagreeable. I am working towards the same goals as my sister, Rev. Rogers, but I disagree on the path to take to get there. I know hate groups exist but we have laws in place right now to take care of hate crimes. Timothy McVeigh has met his maker. The killers of the black man in Jasper Texas; 2 on death row and 1 serving life without the possibility of parole. We must now allow the system to work. We as a people are no longer a monolith, if we ever were. W.E.B DuBois and Booker T. Washington disagreed on the process but both had the same goal, raising the life of our people. As we get better educated, we must expect that the goals can be achieved by different methods. Resorting to name-calling is childish and indicates lack of a credible argument to present.

Don't ignore the fats. In an earlier post, I copied the University of Montana press release. Dr. Kennedy topic was not the controversial book or its title. He came as a part of the MLK observance. The University's Diversity group see Dr. Kennedy as an authority on race relations. His lectures are designed to provoke discussions. Someone mentioned a 2 foot high sign; I contacted several people in Bozeman and they knew nothing about such a sign. Again, do I have to think exactly as you do for us to get along? Is name-calling ever necessary in a discussion?

Be Blessed

-- Anonymous, January 20, 2004

Rev. Paris, i live in Bozeman, Montana, and if the people you contacted in Bozeman, did not see the sign they are BLIND for they are all over the university! And around town, I find it interesting that you would take the word of people that you do not know over someone who is an ame minister, black and lives here. I do not know who you spoke to in Bozeman, I would be interested to know!

Now in terms of the article you posted from the bozman, chronicle, the school is Montana state university first of all and the press release is one that they sent out. The diversity committee is made up of three people and they are white. The person that booked Dr. Kennedy was quoted in the MSU exponent as saying he booked Dr. Kennedy.

I have no problem getting along! I do it quite well but when someone from Texas tells me what is going on in the town I work and live in to defend a man who will be here one night, then that is not getting along.

I have an EXCELLENT reputation in my city and state and there are many that can attest to this. But I am truly grateful that you posted the above post for it speaks volumes about how you will protect someone's book over the possible consequences of human lives.

As I have said, I stand on my reputation and if you do not believe me so be it. But I know what I am dealing with and now I know what I am dealing with in regards to you. You have called me a liar, I can take it. Oh, and the so called people that you called in Bozeman, here are some of the places they can see the posters. on the campus of MSU in the student union building and every building on campus, by the way there are 12,000 students, so maybe they can see the posters, insty prints on the corner of tracy and babcock, the leaf and bean, daily coffee hous, the co-op, hastings book store, if they need more places have them email me.

And the next time you want to check up on something I have said, contact any city or county commissioner, judge, country attorney, or either of our U.S senators democrat or republican, they will vouch for me.

Can we get along, I doubt it, when someone calls me a liar, then they have crossed the line. Oh, one last thing last weeks edition of the university newspaper called the Exponent had an article about Dr. Kennedy and they interviewed the person who booked Dr. Kennedy and it is interesting reading. Out of 12,000 students there are 60 african americans, no latino's and not one professor of color. So do the math and guess who make us the diversity committee!!!!!!!!!!!!! Goodby Rev. Paris, I am done with you.

-- Anonymous, January 20, 2004

As long as God is our Father, Christ is our Redeemer, and Man our Brother, you are still my sister and I will never be through with you. The eternal God is our refuge. BE Blessed

-- Anonymous, January 20, 2004

Rev. Paris, I just finished praying, and I will continue to pray until there is joy and harmony on this board. I will pray unceasingly and I know this board will be greater than anything anyone could ever imagine! For in the name of Jesus this board and all of it's content belong to him and him alone.

I have asked God to forgive me for harsh words that I have said, no matter what others do to me or say to me, I am strong in the lord.

MARK 11:25 "And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone; [not just the one you are praying for] so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your transgressions. [26] ["But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father who is in heaven forgive your transgressions."

-- Anonymous, January 20, 2004

Rev. Rogers -

If time permits and you receive this note before Kennedy's Lecture tonight please ask him why he and 53 other HLS professors have joined in an amicus curiae brief regarding DoD's decision to withdraw Federal assistance to institutions which discriminate against military recruiters. Since Harvard Law School falls in this category the decision by DoD will obviously have adverse effects on the Harvard community. If Harvard Law School does not allow military recruiters to have access to their students for careers in the US Armed Forces this would appear to me that the Law School is practicing a form of discrimination. I would be most interested in Professor Kennedy's response. I emailed his office earlier today but he may be preparing for his trip to Bozeman. Many Thanks. QED

-- Anonymous, January 21, 2004

Bill, I would suggest you email his office. It is 3:06 PM as I am writing this email. I would assume Dr. Kennedy is already in town by now. His lecture starts at 7:30 tonight. And his book signing and question and answer is scheduled for 9 P.M. so I have no idea how many people will be there or not.

Because I have diabetic neuropathy, nerve damage it is the most painful in the evening and It is rare that I am out that late because of the debilitating pain in the evening. But in the words of the youth "I will suck it up" and stay.

Danielle will not be able to stay for the entire evening for she is in a flamenco and tango dance troupe and they are rehearsing for a performance in April.

I am sure the event will be covered in the Bozeman, Chronicle. tomorrow.

-- Anonymous, January 21, 2004

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