Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Officials Should Be Held Accountable

In response to the comments about the negativity of BANCO... For myself, I understand the reason for rallies and the attempt to hold elected officials and other gov. officials to their reponsibilities, and to point out as often as necessary when they abuse their authority. Otherwise, they will be allowed to continue to be the cause of suffering.

It reminds me when the author, Arianna Huffington, said she worked tirelessly for many charities when living in Washington DC.... until the day it dawned on her that the government was passing laws that would undo all of her efforts - or, that no matter how hard she worked to help people, gov. policies tore down her efforts either immediately or eventually.

There are probably hundreds of kind souls doing good in Benton Harbor, but until the justice system operates in a way that is fair, citizens will be living in fear. Until that fear is eradicated, people will be unableto carry on their lives. The kindness and reaching out will not help if folks are afraid to leave their homes.

Sometimes I think that business as usual has been carried on for so long in Berrien County that people who have lived there a long time don't even realize how bad it is. Rev. Pinkney goes to court regularly and can hardly believe the way people are treated there. There are countless stories from people about the harrassment they receive from law enforcement simply for driving while black. It is not this bad in most other communities - even places with high levels of unemployment and poverty.

I believe Benton Harbor residents are fortunate to have Rev. Pinkney in their city - acting as court watchdog and supporting people in whatever way he can.