I am so impressed with students from Dudley High School. During speakers from the floor at last night's County Commissioner meeting (N&R) they demonstrated that the next generation of black leaders "gets it". They pounded Billy Yow in an organized, multipoint series of speeches that put Yow and his followers on notice that they are paying close attention and that they will not tolerate any show of racism in Guilford County, now... or in the future. Very impressive.
Also, I agree with Ed Cone on Mark McDaniel. As a white Republican former State Senator, McDaniel spoke for me and I appreciate it. I should have been there to speak against Yow myself and I regret not doing so. That won't happen again.
McDaniel related to the Commissioners that several years ago he was traveling through eastern Carolina and came to the town of Smithfield. At the town's limit a sign had been erected that read: "Welcome to Smithfield - Home of the Ku Klux Klan". He was disgusted by the sign and that disgust manifested itself many years later when he was asked to consider any type of economic package that would have thrown money towards Smithfield. His votes went against them because of that public show of racism that apparently went unchallenged by the town's citizenry all those years ago.
McDaniel then stated that Billy Yow's t-shirt was a worse offense than Smithfield's because it involved an elected official. He then urged the Commissioners to make a statement to the world that racism, in all of its forms, will not be tolerated any longer in Guilford County because to do otherwise paints Guilford as a racist locale and would place our economic future in jeopardy.
Commissioer Carolyn Coleman's resolution condemning Yow passed 7-2 with Trudy Wade(R) abstaining for a weak reason that seems to have been crafted to provide some warped political cover. The other two votes against the resolution came from Yow and his buddy Steve Arnold. The only Republican to vote for the condemnation was my favorite Commissioner Mary Rakestraw who continues to demonstrate that she will always vote her conscience... not the "Party line". The other Republican, Linda Shaw, was absent.
Except for Rakestraw's vote and McDaniels' speech, last night's meeting confirmed... again... that the Guilford County GOP's leadership is a throwback to a time when racism was an acceptable practice. I suggest that our Republican "leaders" consider taking up residence in Smithfield where they can be with their own kind.
As for my threat to leave the GOP: After hearing McDaniel so eloquently demonstrate that a Guilford County Republican can come off as a normal human being... I have decided to stand and fight from within alongside Mark and Mary. I agree with what Sen. John McCain said yesterday... "I believe my Party has gone astray..." A little corrective action is in order.
Update: In a first draft of this I had Commissioner Wade as a district representative. My fact-checker, Greensboro Booster, corrected me so I have corrected the post but doing so wiped his comment.