Favorite

Elaine massacre 

Elaine massacre

I've read the review that Grif Stockley wrote of my book “On the Laps  of Gods,” and since it basically questions my integrity, I hope that you will give me the opportunity to respond.

Mr. Stockley says that I didn't make any mention of his book except in a reference to the Stockley files in the notes section; in fact, his book is listed in the bibliography, along with Mr. Cortner's and the writings of everyone else who has taken a swing at this story. I know that he was upset with the Cornell West blurb, but that's a blurb, and not me, and I certainly do not make any claim in the book that I “unearthed” this subject or that I was the first to write about it.

But, that said, I do believe that “On the Laps of Gods” is the first book to provide a coherent, documented account of the killing that went on in Elaine. In his book, Grif Stockley reviewed the many anecdotal accounts or claims that many blacks were killed, and concluded that such anecdotes should be seen as evidence that a massacre occurred. What I was able to do — and I pieced this together from an exhaustive review of original sources — is map out the killings that happened in space and time.

Historians have long questioned whether federal troops restored the peace or became involved in killing blacks in a significant way; in “On the Laps of Gods,” I document precisely when and where the federal troops opened fire with their machine guns, and I have eyewitnesses to that killing, etc. And that is why the book jacket claims that “On the Laps of Gods” — which by the way is about much more than the Elaine Massacre — documents the massacre.

I actually wrote Mr. Stockley an e-mail expressing my regret that he felt slighted (I think what he wanted me to do was write a bibliographic essay on the history of what had been written about Elaine before, and as I said in the e-mail to Mr. Stockley, I wish now that I had done that). But I also understood the bibliography to be the place where you recognized all of the writers who had come before you, and whose work you went to school on, and I went to school on the backs of many, many writers.

Bob Whitaker

 

An editing change by the Times of Grif Stockley's review left Whitaker with an erroneous impression on one point, which we regret. Stockley's original version said the bibliography failed to contain the full title of his book, “Blood in Their Eyes: The Elaine Race Massacres of 1919.” The full title, rather than just “Blood in Their Eyes,” would have alerted readers to the fact that someone had already concluded what had happened was a massacre, Stockley said. He said he was happy to let critics judge the merit of both books.

Now it's Obama

So, now that Obama has joined ol' “My Friends” McCain as a party nominee, the attention will soon start shifting to the veepstakes. Yes, Obama will face a lot of initial pressure to make the “easy choice” of selecting Hillary Clinton in an attempt to merge the 18 million people who voted for her into his camp. Many Democratic leaders and voters are calling for it. But, as we have seen throughout this campaign thus far, Team Obama has made the “smart choice” again and again, and I believe this time will be no different. The smart choice is not Hillary Clinton.

I could easily go into a rant about how Senator Clinton doesn't deserve to be on the ticket with Obama given some of her campaign tactics –- this is one Democrat who won't soon forget the disappointment I had over the many instances of low-ball politics employed by both Clintons during this primary. But not selecting Clinton for V.P. is much more than “na na na na boo boo” for me. Obama needs to select somebody who will compliment his message of change, bipartisanship, and long-held opposition to the Iraq War. Someone with extensive foreign policy experience who may ease people's minds about electing a relative newcomer as commander-in-chief in wartime. Someone who has a geographical advantage on the electoral college map. Someone seen as the type of political moderate that served Democrats so well in the 2006 mid-term elections. This person is not Hillary Clinton. This person is Sen. Jim Webb from Virginia.

Jim Webb is relatively new to politics, though his impressive military and Washington experience served as a major factor in his election to the U.S. Senate. His newcomer status makes him a change candidate in his own right. Perhaps most important is Webb's extensive military experience coupled with his opposition to the Iraq War.

Jeff Woodmansee

North Little Rock

 

Letter writer Louis Anthes supports Barack Obama, the civil rights movement and affirmative action. A true civil rights movement wouldn't advocate discrimination against any ethnic group. He criticizes Orval Faubus but supports discrimination against white Americans in education and employment. That appears to be the same kind of “supremacist” thinking for which he criticizes Faubus.

Obama if elected president would likely expand affirmative action programs regardless of the reasons affecting black, Hispanic and immigrant employability. Those social forces are usually fatherless homes leading to a lack of education and discipline and poor English skills. And since many European-Americans care little about the rights of their own race anymore, it's easier to discriminate against us than to motivate these families toward greater educational achievement.

Obama was a member of a church for 20 years whose pastor taught hatred of other races. Obama belonged to that church for political expediency and now is trying to distance himself for the same reason.

Is America ready for a black president? If we are, he ought to at least be someone who can apply the law equally to all Americans. Someone who doesn't allow his resentment to control his thinking instead of his intellect. Obama's association with his pastor indicates he tolerated that message, a teaching that Orval Faubus would have never approved.

Thomas Pope

Little Rock

 

Favorite

Comments

Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

More by Arkansas Times Staff

Readers also liked…

  • Outsourcing state government

    As a citizen, I don't get to choose not to pay taxes because I don't like what the Arkansas state government is spending state and federal money on, such as paying a Chinese company, Sun Paper, approximately $1 billion to build a paper mill in Clark County.
    • Sep 22, 2016

Most Shared

  • Sarah Huckabee Sanders to be deputy White House press secretary

    Donald Trump announced additional White House staff today, notably including Sarah Huckabee Sanders, deputy assistant to the president and principal deputy press secretary.
  • Legislation filed for $10 million school voucher program

    The legislation to vastly expand transfer of state tax dollars to private schools came before the school choice day event I mentioned earlier.
  • Watch the trailer for 'Shelter,' the Renaud Bros. new doc on homeless kids in New Orleans

    Check out the trailer for "Shelter," the Renaud Bros. new feature-length documentary about homeless teens navigating life on the streets of New Orleans with the help of Covenant House, the longstanding French Quarter shelter for homeless kids.
  • Trumpeting

    When President-elect Trump announced he would, in a few days, force Congress to enact comprehensive health insurance for everyone, poor or rich, that would provide better and cheaper care than they've ever gotten, you had to wonder whether this guy is a miracle worker or a fool.
  • Putin and Trump

    Here's a thought exercise: What do you suppose would happen if Russian strongman Vladimir Putin decided to clarify remarks he reportedly made about Donald Trump during the election campaign?

Latest in Letters

  • Taking on trainers

    As our legislators return to work this week, they will take up House Bill 1040, preventing athletic trainers from practicing in nonclinical settings and severely restricting what they can do to provide assistance to students.
    • Jan 19, 2017
  • Ride it out

    Before the JFK assassination and the dawn of conspiracy theories, we trusted our government to tell us what was what. Ike might hold back a few facts in the interest of national security, but he would never flat-out lie to us.
    • Jan 5, 2017
  • For gun sense

    Since the attack at Ohio State University, lawmakers have offered solutions they believe would prevent such scary events.
    • Jan 5, 2017
  • More »

Visit Arkansas

1.73-carat diamond found at Crater of Diamonds State Park

1.73-carat diamond found at Crater of Diamonds State Park

Jack Pearadin and Doug Nelsen found a 1.73-carat diamond after nearly a year of searching the park's field.

Event Calendar

« »

January

S M T W T F S
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30 31  

Most Recent Comments

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation