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Diary of a Worm’s Life in a Home “Growing Power” Box and Garden

Rain Garden
August 2010

Tomatoes & Basil
from Front Lawn
Garden 2010

Back Yard
Garden 08/02/09

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Holy Family Today - Sunday, December 28, 2014

Below is a reflection from Father Charles McCarthy, a Melkite priest, that is the Director of the Center for Christian Nonviolence.

“Below is a photograph of an Iraqi family, exactly like the Holy Family, struggling to escape the energy of the hideous and heinous spirit that posed Herod and that possesses politicians, whether men or women, to massacre children in order to protect or advance their own political and economic interests or the economic interests of those to whom they owe their political power. What the Churches and Church leaders of Christianity should be asking themselves on the Feast of the Holy Innocents is whether they and their Churches by withdrawing their allegiance from Jesus and His teaching of Nonviolent Love of friends and enemies and giving it instead to some one or another of the humanly devised Christian just war fantasies, have done far, far more to proclaim and make flesh in this world the spirit that filled Herod two thousand years ago rather than the Spirit that filled Jesus two thousand years ago—and continues to fill Him to this very instant.

Leslie Stahl national TV reporter: ‘We have heard that half a million children have died. I mean that is more children than died at Hiroshima. And, you know, is the price worth it?’

Secretary of State Madeline Albright: ‘The price, we think the price was worth it.’

What the world needs is to replace Herod with a fresh face. That it needs Churches, their leaders and people, to return to fidelity to the Nonviolent Jesus of the Gospels and His Way of Nonviolent of friends and enemies is off the table for consideration in Rome, Constantinople, Geneva and Canterbury.”

Emmanuel Charles McCarthy


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Dreams of Hope Keep Nightmares Away - Saturday, December 27, 2014

“Out of a Mountain of Despair,
a Stone of Hope”
MLK Memorial in D.C.

President Obama announced from his Christmas vacation in Hawaii that the US was finally pulling out of Afghanistan after 12 years or so of our war on this nation. Actually 11, 000 US troops would remain to aid the Afghanistan military who has suffering its worst year of lost of life. In fact this year, 2014, has been the bloodiest in the history of this war. As with Iraq this country is in much worse shape than when we invaded it. In Iraq it was the false belief that Iraq had “weapons of mass destruction” and in Afghanistan it was the existence of the Al Qaeda group that gave us the reason for invasion. There was no “weapons of mass destruction” in Iraq and the Al Qaeda group is long gone in Afghanistan. What good did the lost of American lives in this countries do and what good came from the many victims, refuges and destruction the civil wars that we created in these two countries. There are now more civil wars and killing in this area than before and the disease of war and violence has spread to Somali, Yemen, Syria, Sudan and Pakistan.

The US has placed bounties of 3–5 million dollars on the increasing number of leaders of what we call “terrorist” groups in these countries. The lessons of history have taught us that throwing violence and money at these struggles will bring us only more violence and killing and cost us more money.

I used to think that our political leaders did not understand this lesson from history but now think they are smart and intellectual people and know exactly what they are doing. I can say the same about the housing crisis in this country where hundreds of thousands of persons lost their homes in foreclosure and are now forced, if fortunate, enough to live in rental units, often owned by landlords who purchased these homes.

However, with Christmas and the New Year I look for hope. I found hope in the growing number of people who are aware of the real causes of the greed and violence around them and are starting to speak out. If we can stay away from the temptation to fight violence with violence and greed with greed we can form communities that will throw wrenches into the machines of destruction not stopping the fall of empire but at least slowing it down. We can than organize communities and when the Empire falls, as history dictates it will, we can form new communities based on peace and justice not the accumulation of might and wealth. In the shell of the fall of the empire we can begin again and building a community of love for all. This dream of hope keeps the nightmares of despair away.


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Gracefully Living In Two Worlds - Friday, December 26, 2014

Native American Walking
in Two Worlds

I returned today from visiting family in Iowa City and near Pulaski WI. They were good Christmas visits and I enjoyed being around family and good food. However, now that I am back home I feel like I am part of two worlds, one with my family where the small talk and good food flow easily and one here burdened by awareness of militarism and racism. Before and between visits I wrote or posted YouTube video called Marquette University and Notre Dame University Teach War and Killing and two postings called Letter from Milwaukee County Jail. These two efforts were small ones in the struggle to combat militarism and racism here at home, in our local communities.

The closest I got to mention these two struggles against militarism and racism during the two family visits was a dialog with my nephew, a police officer in a suburb of Settle, talking in general about relations of community members with police officers. It was refreshing to have a dialog like this but I did not come close with anyone else on these visits.

Perhaps that is just as well. Many people, family and friends, seem to be living in two worlds but now aware of the depths of evils in their own world. Pushing unwelcome conversations probably does more harm than good.

Perhaps this is what Christmas is all about. On one hand we got the holiday gift buying and giving, all the tinsel and decorations surrounding Christmas, all the partying that goes on; while on the other hand, there is the poverty and rejection surrounding the birth of Jesus. Jesus came into the world quietly and almost unnoticed and left the world in shame, rejections and death. For three years before he was killed Jesus left the normal life of itinerant preacher, going place to place healing and associating with all kinds of persons. But at the end the two worlds, Kingdom of God and Roman Empire clashed.

Awareness of death helps keep the balance between the two worlds. In the perspective of dying if we are talking about a football team or blacks dying by hands of police on the streets, does it really matter? Talking matters little. I pray for the courage to live gracefully in the two worlds.


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Letter from Milwaukee County Jail, Part 2-“Do Not Turn Human on Me Now!” - Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Memphis Sanitation Worker,
on strike in 1968

Part Two “Do Not Turn Human on Me Now”

A group of us, males, were not in a cell but sitting on benches in the main staging area for court. We were managing to find a little humor in our condition. A guard told us to be quiet or else she would feed us with some prison food, which looked, smelled and tasted like cow dung. I heard of this kind of food and asked her about the baloney sandwiches I received in jail in the old days. She said they still had them but this dung food was reserved for prisoners that were not cooperative.

New orders seem to come down and those of us on the two benches were put into one small holding cell. There was a concrete slab for sitting and a toilet behind a screen. There was not enough room for us all to sit so we took turns standing and looking out the window in the door to see what was happening.

I thought of my deceased son and one of his friends who had been held in padded isolation cells in the past, with nothing to do and food shoved under the door. I thought afterward that I should have asked for one of these types of cells, which I had written to the County Executive and Sheriff about describing them as ‘torture cells’. If a person did not have mental health challenges before going in these cells he or she would have one going out. My son was reluctant to describe the horrors of these cells and I was just talking last night to one of his friends who had been in such a cell for nearly a week and he did not even want to remember this torture chamber.

We knew we were in for a long haul when later in the night a deputy brought us each four slices of stale white bread and three very thin slices of something that could have been baloney. Many of us had not eaten anything all day so we ate them down. I made my sandwich into a triple-decker but without mustard or butter it was just stale bread with processed mystery meat. At least it was not the dung like meat we were threatened with.
During the course of the night some of us were taken out for processing, fingerprints, mugs shots and the rest. This is not necessary for people receiving citations but I guess the sheriff wanted to put on a good show of his power and might. The sheriff’s deputies really did not know who was in what cell so they would come to the door and yell a name in to see if the person there.

A few persons went out for processing but did not come back, so we thought they were being released. One of the deputies said we would all be processed first and since that would take so long, at the slow rate they were going, it would take until the next afternoon. Most persons in our cell did not believe him, especially when the young men in our cell, white or Latino, with no records, did not come back. However, the next day we saw some of them in the open unit or other cell blocks. During the evening there was just nine of us left and by early morning just seven.

When it came my turn to be photographed and fingerprinted I was given a list of stuff they had taken from me. I thought, since I already had my ticket, I would be released but I was sent back to the same old cell.

When people would leave the cell we would say “do not come back.”
Some of the deputies tried to make amends for the rough treatment we were getting and some did not care. One of the men in our cell had his glasses crushed when he was arrested, had a cut above his eye and needed his eyes washed out. He had asked for treatment but it was not until the middle of the night that he was taken out to the center room, put in chains, strapped in a rolling stretcher and taken somewhere. We thought he would get out but we saw him in the morning in another lockup with bandage above his eyes.

A young Latino, who I found out later on, had graduated from the same high school I did, Marquette University High School, had asked, since he had been arrested if he could call his mother to tell her where he was since he knew she would be worried about him. Every time a guard would open the cell he, backed by rest of us, would ask if he could call his mom. Once, when he was begging one of the deputies for a phone call to his mother, she said to him: “Do not turn human on me now!” A black middle age man in the cell asked her to repeat what she said. She just mumbled something like we are just “protestors.” When she left we all checked with each other to make sure what he heard was right. We all heard the same thing and a lively discussion of not being treated as a human being followed. Conscious or unconscious her statement really summed up the feelings in our cell. We were being treated as less than human beings. The Blacks in our cell understood this feeling more than the rest of us, old, young and white.

The incident reminded me of the 1968 Memphis Sanitation movement, Martin Luther King Jr’s. last march when the slogan of the black men striking was “I am a man”. Now I more deeply understood what I say when I am insulted or, worse yet, ignored. “I am a human being.”
We had a lot of good and lively discussions, filled with a lot of humor, the whole night long. We had a ‘dialog’ the whole night long, sometimes heated but also honest and respectful. It reminded me of the lively discussions my deceased son Peter and I had about religion and life. My wife would often tell us to “stop arguing” and we would tell her we were not arguing but just having a passionate discussion about our beliefs. Creative dialog and lively discussion seems to be a lost art in our society. Rather than dialog or discuss, people who disagree just say “that is your opinion and I have my opinion.” Values, morals and beliefs are sometime, I believe, more than opinions, but are matters of conscience.

On the Dontre Hamilton case we were all of one mind. Although we did not mean to get arrested we were okay to sit in jail in solidarity with Dontre and his family. On the power of violence vs. nonviolence we had some disagreements. Some felt violence was the only way things change and nonviolence only worked with sympathetic enemies. I did not agree and gave some examples from history but it was hard to disagree with the strong feelings some of these men had, based on their experience. We also were slightly in disagreement in our discussion about human rights when I said that a young child killed in Afghanistan was a human being. No one disagreed but felt there was no comparison to this case and an innocent child that was killed in a time of war. One white adult, experienced in fighting for human rights, kept saying there was no comparison because one youth was killed in war time and blacks are being killed on streets of our cities. I also made the mistake again of saying something critical about President Obama in front of African Americans. Some take any criticism of his actions, no matter what he does or does not do, as a criticism of him personally and of all Black people. Even Sheriff Clark, who was responsible for our arrest and who is Black, got off light compared to statements from the white Mayor or Police Chief. I found out later that Sheriff Clark was telling the media and people outside that we were ‘outside agitators’ and mobsters doing this for are personal gratification. Sheriff Clark is a Catholic who went to same high school as I and the young Latino in our cell. I need to be more sensitive when talking about Black leaders like Obama who does get called a lot of names and is disrespected because of the color of his skin by certain conservative white groups.

The people in the cell went from 11 to 9 to 7 by the morning. We thought those who left the cell were released. Also we wondered what happened to the people who were going up the other ramp, the North ramp. Were they all arrested? In the morning and after we got out we found out they were also ‘trapped on the ramp.” The difference was there was ground on the side of the north ramp which they could go down. However, as they tried to obey the deputies and police they were arrested, except for a small group of immediate family members of Dontre Hamilton, who were allowed to leave. We found out after we got out that persons not arrested and other supporters camped out all night at the County jail waiting for us.

I really felt bonded with those who were in our cell all night. Someone even joked about a one year anniversary next Dec. 20th. These men, young, old black, white, Latino are my brothers. I was released in one of the first groups of men, after most of the women had been released. When I heard about all the names we were called by the Sheriff, the Police Chief and the Mayor, all I could think of was that “I am a human being”. I am Dontre Hamilton.

My reflections of life and death of Dontre Hamilton are strong but will need to wait till another time. All I can say now is “Black Lives Matter”.


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Letter from Milwaukee County Jail, Part One-“Trapped on the Ramp” - Sunday, December 21, 2014

On Monday 22, 2015, nearly 8 months after a white police officer shot fourteen times Dontre Hamilton, a young unharmed, youth black man sleeping in a public park, The District Attorney of Milwaukee County cleared the police officer of all charges. More on this after I write Part 2 “Do Not Turn Human on Me Now.”

I am not an anarchist, mobster, outside agitator, disappointment to the Mayor or engaged in actions harming public safety. However, I am a human being and believe Black Lives Matter.

Friday afternoon sitting in my living room I looked up at the clock and noticed it was 3:45 pm. I thought of what I was going to do next. I could go shopping for my wife, post the video on military training at Catholic Universities on YouTube or go to the rally at Red Arrow Park calling for Justice for Dontre Hamilton. Already I had scheduled a necessary haircut for Saturday morning. I chose to go downtown to the rally. I have been to these rallies before and we usually march to city hall, police station or county building demanding justice for Dontre Hamilton, a 30-year old unarmed black man who was shot 14 times by a white police man for sleeping on a public park bench downtown at Red Arrow Park.

Dontre was killed April 30, 2014 and still there was no decision by the District Attorney on charging the police officer involved. Dontre’s killing is part of a long history of black men, who present no danger to anyone, being killed by police or other white persons who not hare not held accountable by legal charges.

By The time I got to the Park and parked my car the march was just starting. I found out that there had been just a short prayer before the marching began. As usual family members, Dontre’s mother, brothers, sister and cousins with community organizers led the march. I got right in step with the 150 or so persons marching. We marched to a road that led to the on-ramp to the expressway downtown.

I sensed something was happening when on the road to the expressway ramps there were police and sheriff’ cars with lights whirling on both sides of the road behind us. I remember that Sheriff Clark had threatened to arrest anyone who went on the country expressway system, his domain. Above us there were a couple of helicopters. Police and sheriff cars blocked the entrance to the road and ramps in front of us. We split up into two groups, one going up the north ramp to the highway and one, which I was in, going up the south ramp. I found out later that the plan was to go up the ramp and, unless one wanted to go on freeway to stop traffic, to go back down the ramp when ordered to do so by police or sheriff deputies. However, when we got up on top of ramp and were ordered by police to go back down there was no turning around. The line of squad cars was blocking us from retreating down the ramps and sheriff deputies had formed a line stopping us. Going forward meant going on the ramp and going further on the freeway. Some went on the freeway and were immediately arrested. Most of us just stood there at the end of the ramp with nowhere to go since there was a concrete wall on the other side of the ramp and freeway. We were trapped on the ramp. When all the handcuff gear was pulled out we knew it was a matter of time before we got handcuffed with our hands behind our backs and with these white plastic handcuffs pulled tight.

The woman next to me had a panic attack when she was cuffed and kept crying out “I can’t breathe.” She went down on the ground and eventually we were able to get deputies to cut off her cuffs. She stood up leaning against me and getting her breath back. By the time some medics came she was doing okay and refused treatment. One of the deputies yelled out that if she did not accept treatment to put the handcuffs back on her. Luckily, it did not happen.
I was in one of the last groups cuffed and waiting for transportation to the county jail. The officer told me to take my gloves off when he cuffed me so now my hands and wrists were hurting and numb from the cold. After a long wait, cuffed in the cold, I started to have a hard time breathing.

There were so many of us, nearly 80 on both ramps, being arrested that there were not enough police and sheriff transportation vehicles. After what seemed to be a long time, a city bus came to pick up the rest of us. In the bus, now after 6 pm, I noticed a friend from peace and justice events in the 60’s was also on the bus. I had seen his wife in the group being arrested and later found out his ex-wife, son and grandson were also in the group. The police let his son call his wife to come and get the seven year old grandson. His son had come into town to pick up a check, Christmas present, from his father and decided to join the march. He and his son were trapped and I heard on the news today that the father was facing additional charges for bringing his son on the ramp. No one in our group expected to be trapped on the ramp and to be arrested.

On the bus my friend had somehow got out of his handcuffs and signaled to me. I communicated through mouth movements my wife’s cell phone number so he could text her why I was not home when she got home from work expecting to go out for a fish fry or pizza.

When one of the middle aged men got on the bus people started to cheer. He was the father of the 18 year old African-American student who was killed by three white men in a liquor store. He had been caught shoplifting by the store owner who told him the police would not be called if he surrendered the stolen items. He did and he apologized to the store owner and was leaving the store when these three white men jumped him and wrestled him to the ground in a strangle hold. By the time the police arrived he had stopped breathing, was revived, and died four days later in the hospital. When meeting with the district attorney, the same one holding back the decision in Dontre Hamilton case, the DA asked the father what he thought the charge should be. The father told the DA something like second degree reckless endangerment of a life and the DA told him that in this county with the racial situation between black and white he would not be able to get a jury to convict the three white men. Of course if the three black men had killed a white teenager in the same situation they would have been charged and probably found guilty.

When the bus finally got to the County jail the handcuffs were taken off and all our stuff except our shirt and pants were taken from us and put in plastic bags. I had a Guatemalan cloth bracelet on my wrist that I have worn for years to remind me of the struggle of the Mayan people for their human rights. I had tied it so it could not fall off as other bracelets had. The deputy took a scissors and just cut it off in a way that made it impossible to put back on. I stood there horrified. He then told me to take off my rings and when I had a hard time taking off one of the rings the deputy told me that if they would not come off I could keep them on. I said to myself jokingly that I was glad he did not cut the rings or my fingers off.

We were chained to a bench outside of the jail and one-by-one led into the building. A group of us men were led to a waiting area. We waited and waited and finally one by one were called up to a nurse for a health check, a few test and lots of questions. One question was if we knew anyone from Sierra Leone due to the concern about Ebola. I have an African sponsored niece from Sierra Leone but since she has been in this country for over 16 years I did not mention her.

A few of us were written up and given 2 citations, a $178.80 ticket for being on the freeway, which really was the ramp, and one for disorderly conduct with a fine of $484.00. I asked the deputy what the disorderly conduct citation was for and he said it was for the same thing, going on the ramp to the expressway. The deputy warned me that if I was arrested again before the court date there would be no citation issued but I would go right to jail, which I was already in.

Suddenly the processing of everyone stopped and it was the first sign it was going to be a long night.

Part Two December 24, 2014 “Do not turn human on me now!”


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Letter From County Jail and Teaching Killing - Saturday, December 20, 2014

Dontre Hamilton’s brother Nathaniel
Hamilton addresses the protesters
outside the county jail Saturday.

Last night’s posting of Diary of the Worm did not happen since I was in the Milwaukee County jail stripped of all devices in a holding cell for over 20 hours. How this happened and what really happened to nearly 80 of us who found ourselves in jail, treated as sub human beings and the object of scorn by Sherriff, Mayor and Police Chief will need to wait till tomorrow night, after I get some sleep since large numbers of us were placed in small retaining cells where there was not enough room for all of us to sit at one time on concrete slap. At one point a deputy told us “Not to act human on her now” since we were only ‘protesters. The theme of the story will be how we were all human beings, black, white, Latino, young and old and were not as the Sheriff called us ‘Mobsters, terrorist, Anarchist, Outside Agitators.

In place of the letter tonight here is a sneak preview of a YouTube video that we hope will go viral and simply states our message for Marquette and Notre Dame Universities to Be Faith to the Gospel and stop teaching war and reflexive killing. Marquette and Notre Dame Teaches War and Killing or


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Truth Will Prevail - Thursday, December 18, 2014

I have been quiet on posting on this Diary of the Worm for a few days for a variety of reasons. Today I received one more reason for not posting or for posting, depending how you take the experience.

Today I was on a conference call with four Vincentians from around the country. It was an appeal of my suspension from Society of St. Vincent de Paul by the US President of the Society. I had asked if I could know who my accusers were and see what the accusations were. I was told it would not matter.

Someone from the US Central office was on the phone with members from New Jersey, Chicago and Cincinnati. The charges from the national president, very vague, were presented and I denied them. The ‘Cease and Desist’ email from the National CEO, who I did not know was charging me, were brought up and I said I did not do what he falsely accuse me of doing. However, than one of the national members brought to my attention a file of 81 pages he had received. He asked me what was and the Diary of the Worm, this posting. I told him and asked what this had to do with the hearing. He then gave me a statement taken out of context how I was calling St. Vincent de Paul Society racist. I explained to him that after 15 years I have come to conclusion that the Society in Milwaukee in its actions, like spending millions of dollars on a Thrift store in an all white area where the poor in minority neighborhoods were not being served by the Society was wrong and a sign of an action, what some would call “institutional or structural” racism. It may be unconscious to small group of white suburban people running the Society in Milwaukee, but it is very harmful to the poor.

But like the lady said from the National Office and like the small group of elite whites who run the local Society practice, facts and poor people do not matter. As one friend told me today “Truth hurts” and people do not want to hear it. If my suspension is upheld, which it seems likely, I will continue to cry out for the poor and marginalized. If I am suspended I do not need to worry about being kicked out of the Society for being a voice of voiceless and go as public as I can. My suspension will be a victory for the powers of ‘exceptionalism’ and ‘racism’ but only a very small one. If my message is true it will still rise up. The truth will prevail.


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Joy Comes From the Heart - Monday, December 15, 2014

This is the season we sing “Joy to the World” for Jesus in born. God became incarnate and walked amidst us showing us the Way.

I have been accused, probably rightly so, as being negative. I am sensitive to injustice and am not afraid to speak about it. However, how much this stereotype of me being negative is partially justified, it went too far when a friend wrote me back scolding me for being so negative toward our US Representative. Yes, I have held her accountable for votes on war and war spending but the email he was referring to I was actually praising and thanking her for having the courage to vote No on the recent budget bill that had perks for Walls Street, rich and military manufactures’. I reread my email and it was clear I was thanking her for her courage not criticizing her. I wrote back to my friend point this out but have not heard back.

Stereotypes and stigmas, can be based on some partial truths, but are harmful for putting people in boxes and categories. Liberal Democrats are always blaming conservative Republicans for all that is wrong and conservative Republicans are blaming liberal Democrats.

I have been thinking of some way to get out of some of the stereotypes and stigmas place on me. Perhaps the best way is not to defend oneself but show person in words and actions the other side of oneself. For example, I can show more joy in life toward others and be less negative.

Also part of the problem is that more and more people have a hard time separating words and actions from the actual person. I can love someone but condemn what they do. Human beings are a lot more than what they seem to be.

I have noticed that good friends are people I can laugh with without fear of being offensive. I can just be. If I do or say something that is wrong I can also apologize and they will forgive me.

Today when I got to my 86 year old friend’s house to complete a small task I found her waiting by her phone from a call about her 114 year old mother, living in Florida, that had been taken this morning to the ER of a local hospital. After I finished my task we sat around waiting for the phone to ring for an update from, nieces, daughters, nephews and grandchildren. While we waited she told me stories of her family and of the lifelong civil rights struggle her life has been. When she tells me stories there is always a lot of humor in them, although the subject matter might be serious. We laughed while waiting.

I am not talking about small talk or meaningless comments or empty jokes. Real humor, like joy, comes from the heart and we all need joy in our struggles.


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Alternative To Love Your Enemy - Sunday, December 14, 2014

If you are finding “Love Your Enemy” of the Gospel hard to do, here is an alternative: “Have No Enemies”


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Haiti Spirtual Power of Nonviolence - Saturday, December 13, 2014

Demonstrators march during a
protest against the government
of President Michel Martelly in
Port-au-Prince, on December
12, 2014

Someone sent me today an article called Haiti: Anti-government demo turns violent I a little taken back. Haitians are very kind, spiritual and peaceful people. When I read the article I realized the violence was on the part of the government police and UN Occupying Powers on people demonstrating against the attempt of the US elected and supported government to return the country to dictatorship.

Before I went to Haiti with a SOAWatch delegation in October of 2011, ten months after the devastating earthquake, I was warned that I would fall in love with people of Haiti and I did. Despite living in extreme poverty they were kind, loving and spiritual persons. I saw no signs of the millions and millions of dollars given to Haiti after the earthquake. The money had not made it way down to rebuilding new roads or new housing in Port-au-Prince where we visited. The money had gone to US military, NGO’s (Non Government Organizations) and US contractors. (See Where Earthquake money for Haiti did and did not go. People were still living in makeshift camps although the NGO’s had pulled out of helping them survive. When the UN military forces, soon after our visit, brought in cholera to the country spirits of the people were still high.

However, you can only persecute and suppress peoples in their own country when they will finally break out and demand freedom. That could be with violence against the oppressor or, as in Haiti, with nonviolence against the oppressors. You cannot defeat a people in their own country, be it Vietnam, Iraq or Haiti, a lesson the USA seems to have not learned.

So the present violence is by the puppet government that will not allow free and democratic elections and is prompt up by US, Canadian, UN and other governing bodies as well as NGO’s. If anyone can keep the struggle for freedom nonviolent it is the Haitian people. They have suffering so much since they won their independence from France I think there is no going back now. I pray and hope that Haiti will soon become another example of how the spiritual power of nonviolence overcomes the violent powers of tyranny.


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This Is What Racism Looks Like - Friday, December 12, 2014

A popular chant on protest marches and rallies is for one person to say: “What does democracy look like” and the whole group to reply “This is what democracy looks like.”

Last night on CBS news there was a interview with four police chiefs from around the country, two African Americans, one woman and our own white Milwaukee Police Chief in Milwaukee.

One of the African American police chiefs remarked how if a policeman worked in certain neighborhoods and encounter particular persons committing crime it was easy to start to form stereotypes. The interviewer said that he was surprised to hear that since what the police chief was saying amounted to profiling. Our Milwaukee Police chief interrupted him and started to talk about how in his city, Milwaukee, 80- 85% of homicide victims are African Americans, two thirds of my robbery victims are African American, 80% of my aggravated assault victims are African Americans and the profile of the offenders is identical if not more so. He says this is the environment we are working.

I do not take fault with his numbers, be they true or not, but am offended that he is talking about our city of Milwaukee and not admitting, as the police chief who talked about stereotyping, was talking about certain neighborhoods.

Milwaukee is the most segregated city in the USA and North Central Milwaukee is 85% plus African American has the highest unemployment, lowest income, worst schools, and is the most improvised of any neighborhood in Milwaukee. It also has the highest concentration of police, since our police chief believes in ‘data driven policing’, policing the neighborhood that has the most crimes; and it has the highest incarceration rate of African Americans in Wisconsin which has the highest in the USA, which has the highest percentage of population incarcerated in the world.

In my opinion just taking numbers for the city out of context is what “racism looks like”. We have known for years that you put high numbers of poor people in one neighborhood and cut them off from other parts of the city and government and business, treat them poorly and give them little opportunity to get out of situation, you are bound to have more crime and violence in this neighborhood. It happened long ago in Irish or other cultural ghettos in the USA. Now those barriers to equal opportunity to jobs, education, transportation, housing, treatment with respect have been torn down for all cultures except African Americans, especially those who are poor.

As a white person I can drive through an African American neighborhood without fear of being stopped by a police officer for no good reason or for something petty like a taillight burned out. I do not have to worry about police inspecting my car or padding me down for no apparent good reason.

Milwaukee continues to isolate African American, especially those are poor, not serve them as other neighbors get serve, except for intense policing, and blame them, as our Police Chief does, for violent crime. This is the self fulfilling prophecy that makes Milwaukee the most racially segregated city in the USA, the most racist. (See M.A.P.S.) This is what racism looks like.


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Same Old Message, New Ways - Thursday, December 11, 2014

Before a colonoscopy procedure today I had to fast from food. Going into the procedure and afterwards my body felt less tired and better than it has in days. Since the procedure I have had two meals and some of the aches and pains are coming back. Lesson learned, I hope, fasting is good for healing of the body. Less food can make more energy for the body?

Jesus tells his apostles when casting out a demon they were not able to cast out that some demons are removed only by ‘prayer and fasting’. I am thinking that we if we get people wearing hoods praying and fasting all over the Marquette campus we may be able to exorcise the demons of ROTC, teaching killing without conscience.

When I was in Guatemala last February I got an idea for a brief video saying in pictures and words that Marquette and Notre Dame are the only two Catholic Universities in the country that teach reflexive killing, killing without conscience. To talk about this subject is one thing, to see and hear it being taught is another thing. Brief videos are a new tactic using modern communications.

A tactic of the White Rose Community in Nazi Germany was to write pamphlets exposing Hitler and drop them from balconies on campus. We can do that and probably not be beheaded as they were.

Perhaps it is time to use new tactics to touch people’s hearts with message justice and peace, tactics from the past like prayer and fasting and tactics from the present like brief, explosive videos and tactics from history, like dropping leaflets from buildings might be the way to go to communicate our same old message in a new way.


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Burning Books and Wasted Imaginations - Wednesday, December 10, 2014

With the garden at rest for the winter, I find myself spending a lot more time inside the house. Actually this is good since I have some reading and writing to catch up with. But not being outside much and not seeing much of the sun has left me tired and somewhat unmotivated. The shadow of death hanging over me is more felt but that might be good because it slows me down and helps to see what is important and not in my life. However, it also makes me more susceptible to wasting of time watching endless sports and news on TV.

So the choice is my slow down and escape or slow down, read, reflect and write. Escaping is easy these days with so many means of entertainment and information.

I have been listening to an audio book, the classic science fiction book Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury. The story is how over the “course of several decades, people embraced new media, sports, and a quickening pace of life.” We can add cell phones, tweeter, Facebook, Tablets and computers to the media and ‘quickening pace of life.’ Books became shorter and more abridged so the government took advantage of this and hires ‘firemen’ to burn books.

I do not think this will happen anytime soon and book sales seem to be up. However, the fact that I am listening to this book borrowed from the library on my cell phone makes somewhat of a comment. The ‘quickening pace of life’ might not be leading us to burning books but it does have a serious and profound effects on our human lives and communications. The many means of communication, in one sense, brings everyone in the world closer together. On the other hand, it can bring less compassion for people, suffering, ill, poor and those uprooted by war.

I read an article today by a Catholic Worker friend, Kathy, that was written about an hospital in Kabul, Afghanistan run by an Italian based charity, which has hospitals all over this worn torn country. The hospital is supported primarily by Italian families. A staff member told her “Pensioners and retirees take from that have. They believe in this work, want to be part of it.”

When Kathy learned that the total budget of the hospital was six million dollars a year she told the staff person that US now spends 2.1 million dollars per soldier, per year in Afghanistan. The U.S. spends more keeping three soldiers there than the entire hospital budget. The staff person could not help from laughing when he told her how the US built a modern hospital in another province, but because the province lacks electricity it cannot possibly function. Even if there was electricity the new US hospital would take over eight times more electricity than his hospital to operate. The fuel cost of the US hospital would be about 3. 2 million dollars, which also means it, will never open. Yet the new US hospital makes for good media coverage.

We have a lot of information from media on the US wars in Iraq and Afghanistan but, as a people, we are desensitized to the death, pain and suffering we are causing.

Books leave a lot to the imagination while TV and other media leave little to the imagination. War becomes another video game.

In the book ‘Fahrenheit 451’ all the government wants people to do is work and be entertained. The thinking, books may bring along, is not allowed. Maybe it is not books we are burning but are we lying waste to our imaginations and our human feelings by the ‘quickening pace of life’.


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No Justice, No Peace - Tuesday, December 09, 2014

The long blue line
protecting the stairs and elevator

Not feeling very motivated to do anything today I thought I would go to the rally for Dontre Hamilton, the young man shot 14 times by a police officer for sleeping in a public park, something very legal. He was killed April 30, 2014 but over seven months later the District Attorney still has not decided to charge the police office or not.
We marched the short distance from Red Arrow Park, where he was killed, to city hall to visit with the mayor. When we got there we found all the elevators and stairs were blocked off by a line of police officers. Despite our pleas, chants and songs they would not bulge. Some went outside to march around only to find they were not allowed back into city hall. So a group of us inside decided to stay and wait for the Mayor.

We waited and waited and police came and went but the doors were blocked for people coming in and no Mayor. While we were waiting the family went over some of the autopsy results in the case. Dontre was shot 14 times, seven times in the back. Dontre’s body had bruises form a beating all over it while the police office had just a minor scratch.

Dontre’s family was present and I got to talk with his mother and two of his brothers plus one of the community organizers for the family. They have persistently in demanding justice for Dontre and engaging in peaceful nonviolent action to obtain it. The Mayor, District Attorney, Police Chief have been, when they can, very diligent in ignoring the case.

The people left at the end were most young persons, a mix of white and African American plus the family and some friends. After five hours it was clear the protesters inside were not going to leave without a meeting with Mayor and so a meeting, third one with Mayor, was arranged. If we had known we were going to be locked out from going in Mayor’s office I think the group would have been better prepared to stay the night or till they were forced to leave.
This case and ones like it, all across the country, is a sign that people are waking up to racism against African American males and ignoring protestors just does not work anymore. At least, let us hope so.

As someone who has been and is being ignored from acting on my conscience be it struggling against racism in the St. Vincent de Paul Society or the nearby country park or struggling against militarism, teaching killing without conscience at local Catholic university, Marquette, I can understand how being ignored on something so important can make you give up or fighting with anger. To be like this family community members to be persistent in struggling for justice but nonviolently not allowing any peace until there is justice is courageous. I will proud to be present. Without Justice there will be Peace.


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Be Not Afraid of Rejects - Monday, December 08, 2014

Joseph, Mary (with Jesus)
rejected at the Inn

This is something I felt the need to write and have sent to a few friends so far. Feel free to share.

December 8, Feast of the Immaculate Conception of Mary, the Mother of God

Dear Friends, Members of the Society, Pastors and Media,

As we wait and watch for Christmas, the birth of Jesus Christ, it is a good time to be aware of the poor, marginalized and rejected. Jesus’ first rejection came when he was still in his mother’s womb, when there was no room for them in the inn. In the Gospel we learn how Jesus dealt with rejection and how we can follow his Way, like in the Beatitudes and Matthew 25. The Way is simple, Do the Works of Spiritual and Corporal Works of Mercy.

Some criticize the works of mercy as band aids and not making real systematic change. However, Jesus, Dorothy Day, Gandhi, St. Francis of Assisi, Martin Luther King Jr., St. Ignatius of Loyola have proven that works of mercy and resistance can spark structural change.

Here in Milwaukee a few of us have been trying to effect structural change in the Society of St. Vincent de Paul (SVDP), since over the years we believe it has lost track of the main Mission of the Society, person to person encounters with those in need doing the works of mercy. Whereas 99.9% of local SVDP conference budgets go to needs of poor only .03% of the Central Council budget, operated by central staff, goes to direct services, works of mercy by the conferences. In fact, the local conference need to pay Central Council store 100% of retail price for donated clothing and household items and new beds, a much greater amount than they receive back from council. The Central Council now owns five properties with only one, Thrift Store on South Side, serving the conferences and main mission and bringing in revenue to the Central Council. Now with the multi-million dollar development of Thrift store in the suburbs the Central Council budget is projecting a greater deficit than ever, money which will come from trust funds for the poor, as all money in SVDP is owned by the poor.

When some of us who have been speaking up for years against this structure that hurts the poor build unsustainable bureaucracy we were marginalized by the few staff and members in control and recently two of us were suspended without any hearing from the Society.

A certified letter I just received from a lawyer who claims to “represent the St. Vincent de Paul Society of Milwaukee (Milwaukee Society)” says the “Milwaukee Society will use all means available to it” to prevent me from participating any activities of the Milwaukee Society, attending meetings, trespassing property of central office or making home visits for conference to people in need.” The suspensions and certified letters were not talked about at any board or council meeting and copies were sent only to the President whose recently election is being challenged, the Executive Director, appointed by the Present and the Finance Director who is appointed by Executive Director.

In a day and age when we are becoming more aware of cultural and institutional racism the ‘Milwaukee Society’ stands out as a white controlled organization who claims to know what is best for Latinos and African Americans in poverty stricken neighborhoods. The million dollar investment in a thrift store in a suburb, even if it does eventually produce a profit, to be used for poor, will just be band aid for problems of poverty and race. A much smaller investment for a ‘sustainable’ thrift store doing the works of mercy’ in North Central Milwaukee could have a structural impact on the community.

Do not be afraid of rejects or marginalized, the poor, black and Latinos. Call for structural change in the Milwaukee Society, change President, Executive Director and Finance Director and a full and independent audit of the Society which is long overdue.

Above all, I ask you to be generous in giving time, talent and money to present St. Vincent de Paul conferences in Milwaukee, not to Central Council or office. A list of structural flaws in the present Milwaukee Society are attached with this letter.

For more information or a needy SVDP conference near you contact me. I speak as an individual and hopefully a Cry for the Poor and you.

May you share in the graces and blessings God only gives to the poor and marginalized,


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Enough! - Sunday, December 07, 2014

Native Americans struggling
against mining interest
in Arizona

Today I read how Congress is poised to give a foreign mining company 2,400 acres of national forest in Arizona that is cherished ancestral homeland to Apache natives in a measure “attached to annual legislation that funds the US Defense Department.” This is just one more of many injustices going on in the USA against the poor and marginalized.

One Native American leader told the media he was saddened by news of the proposal, yet not all that surprised. The Native American leader was not surprised is the same as the African American young adult not being surprised as he is stopped by police for no good reason? The new order of rich getting richer, and with more power and more people getting poor with less power seems to be accepted by many.

However, there are a growing number of people saying No: No to killing of African American males by white police, No to militarization of our education system, No to removal of human rights to poor and marginalized, No to money being free speech or corporations being persons, no to destruction of our environment, No to endless wars and no to privatization of education. Each day there are more and more injustices that we can be silent about or say No.

In my opinion the rich and powerful, powers that be, throw so much at else that is negative that all we can say is No or that is just the way it is. As more and more people break the silence and say No, that is “Enough”, we can start making the connection between what we see as immoral.

We cannot as individual change anyone but ourselves, but we changed individuals can stand together and say No, and better yet, say Yes to positive new ways of doing things. For my limited part I am trying to connect the cultural and institutional racism we see around us with the militarization of our education system, like at Marquette Jesuit Catholic University. When people come aware of injustices and immorality around them they can come together to say “Enough” and yes to working together.

The sources of evil and injustices, money, power and glory are very universal. St. Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of Society of Jesus, Jesuits, spoke about these same evils when he wrote the “Spiritual Exercises in the 16th century. We do not need to know more information or hear more talks or read more to understand the evils around us. We just need to open our eyes and ears and follow our conscience. When we stop and say “Enough” we may suffer rejections and be marginalized, but non-cooperation with evil is one of the best way to overcome it.


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Awake and Be Ready! - Saturday, December 06, 2014

A Meek Inheritance
by Peter Graf

Good, old St. Nick came and went leaving my wife an I Tunes Card and me nothing. It is just as well since I have been given many blessings this year and now only need to realize and be aware of more of them.

Advent is a time of Waking Up and Getting Ready. Waking up to Word of God, Jesus, who despite being rejected, even in his mother’s womb, is still coming and getting ready to see the graces and blessings God gives only to the poor and marginalized but allows us to share in. So my Advent Prayer is:

Open my heart, ears and eyes so I can better feel, hear and see the presence of our God in all things.

My heart may be broken from what I see and hear but know the healing power of Jesus will be there for me.

With ears to hear I may hear what I do not want to hear but know I will be given the courage to hear these words.

With eyes to see I may see some troubling events and acts that offend my conscience but I know I will be given the power to forgive and be forgiven myself.

Opening of my heart, ears and eyes may make me weak and vulnerable but I know that in my weakness and dependence will be my strength.

With work I can till the soil and produce a good crop. With grace of God I can hear, see and feel the Word of God and live the Gospel.

In hurting there is healing, in sorrow there is joy, in sadness there is happiness for those with an open heart, ears and eyes.

I pray this Advent to become awake and ready.


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Revolutionary Works of Mercy - Friday, December 05, 2014

Revolutionary Way of Jesus

It is the night before St. Nicholas day and I almost forgot to hand our stockings on the mantle on the fireplace. I would have forgotten about it except for sign in the drugstore window letting everyone know its Dec. 5th, the eve of St. Nicholas, the predecessor to Santa Clause.

In one of the folklore stores about him he throws three bags of money in a home for a poor father to have a dowry for his three daughters’ so they get married rather than be prostitutes. Some say he dropped the three purses down the chimney. In this story and his life his works of mercy has significant changes in the lives of the people around him.

Many critics of works of mercy, spiritual and corporal, like feeding the poor, visiting those in prison, say such works on only band aids and we really need to work for systematic change in society. Looking at the Gospel I can only find Jesus telling his followers that the poor, dependent, are blessed and doing works of mercy is the Way. He clearly states that nations and groups will be judged on how they perform works of mercy, like giving shelter to homeless. “Truly, I say to you what you did for the least you did for me.”

Now one can ask how works of mercy, like the spiritual works of mercy, ‘to bear wrongs patiently’, really made structural changes. Take a look at the civil rights movement and what Dr. King says in the letter from Birmingham Jail about this spiritual work of mercy can lead to structural change. The spiritual works of mercy are at the heart of nonviolence.

When I was trying to get the money from sale of our closed Catholic Church for the works of mercy in Milwaukee I had a hard time explaining how doing works of mercy, like providing beds and appliances to people in need, could lead to revolutionary change. So I wrote a parable, Thy Kingdom come on Earth as it is in Heaven, showing how having a bed, refrigerator and stove can radically affect a young boy’s life and make a significant change in his environment.

But people, for the most part, did not get it, as they do not get the Parable of the “Judgment of Nations” in the Gospel, Matthew 25. They interrupt the parable about the works of mercy as saying what individuals should do not what nations, societies or groups should do. (In the Mediterranean culture of Jesus’ time there was not such thing as ‘individualism’, everyone was part of a group.) I agree that you can always judge a society by how it treats its poor and marginalized.

This is at the heart of my complaint about the Milwaukee Society of St. Vincent de Paul. Building a million dollar thrift store in the suburbs might someday bring some revenue to help the poor in North Center Milwaukee. However, building a successful and sustainable thrift store, for much less money, in the heart of the North Central Milwaukee would results in structural change and speaks louder than a few alms of the love of the Society and Catholic Church for poor and marginalized. Blessings and donations would follow.

Good old St. Nick, like many saints and heroes, from Gandhi to Dorothy Day, tells us how to make revolutionary and systematic change simple by doing the works of mercy.


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Transit For All - Thursday, December 04, 2014

Tonight I went to a public hearing at my old high school, Marquette University High School. It was a hearing held by the Wisconsin Department of Transportation about two proposals to widen Hwy 94 between 70th and 16th street in Milwaukee. All but one person spoke against the two proposals, many arguing for public transit system instead. The expensive new freeway would serve people coming in or getting out of city during drive times by cutting their drive time by a few minutes. However, for the vast number of people in North Central Milwaukee and South Central it would be of no service and would not able to them to get to and from jobs in the suburbs. Milwaukee has a terrible transit system, locking the poor in boundaries, African Americans in North Side and Latinos on South Side. A few people have the courage to call the proposals, what they are, ‘institutional racism.’

After the hearing I had this strange feeling that on one hand the people have spoken and the freeway would not be built but on the other hand all this was said was for naught since the State Government and the Big Highway lobby had already made up their minds. I told my negative feelings, of waste of time, to my long time friend who is a mass transit activist. He was more positive and mentioned the hearing was recorded and copy would be going to Federal Department of Transportation who might take note and stop it. I hope he is right.

The expanded highway would serve the interest of the few while the mass transit system, at much less a cost, would serve the interest of all. Transit is for all while highway expansion isfor the few.


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Tired or Reenergized? - Wednesday, December 03, 2014

Many people I know, including myself, are sick or just very tired. I do not know what it is, maybe just the weather or people I know getting older or busier, but it seems to be.

One friend I know is not so old, perhaps in her 50’s, but she is tired from being poor. She lives in a small house with her daughter, granddaughters and great granddaughter. She is going to school full time trying to earn her degree; she works full time at a very hard job and is active in her church and social justice activities. No matter how hard she tries or hard she works she never seems to get ahead in life and stays trapped in the web of poverty. When she sees injustice, like that of the Milwaukee St. Vincent de Paul, she seeks to change it and is often frustrated with the indifference of others. She does not know how we got here but knows there has been a basic structural change in society that hurts the poor and marginalized.

A good example is that the few controlling the St. Vincent de Paul Society in Milwaukee say they are interested in structural change in society but then spend millions of dollars on a thrift store in the suburbs saying it will make money to help the poor. Putting a store in the midst of neighborhood of the poor would be making a structural change; putting in the suburbs to make money for the poor is, at best if it works, just a band aid.

A model for structural change in society is in Matthew 25 in the Gospel. Jesus is talking of how nations, governments and groups will be judged. Those institutions that individually and collectively that are structured to feed the hungry, clothe persons, provide basic house will be welcome in to the kingdom of God. Those who do not do “for the least of people” will be cast aside. When individuals, groups like St. Vincent de Paul, governments like City of Milwaukee, nations like the USA learn and practice there will be a true revolution.

Tonight on TV news I heard that two after school programs that are proven to help teenage African Americans excel in school are being cut, “due to lack of funding.” One of the staff of the centers said that we could spend a few hundred dollars to help a teen at the front end of his life or spend $30,000 to house that person in prison at the other end. When will we learn that given opportunity, good paying jobs, affordable health insurance, excellent schools, money for basic needs like food and shelter to everyone who needs it, like my friend, we will reenergize our county and perhaps not be so tired.


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Boiled Peanuts - Tuesday, December 02, 2014

A friend observed that my recent postings, like on racism, sounded like I am down in spirits. I have to admit that has been somewhat true recently, just feeling unmotivated. But I did know something that would pick up my spirits, visiting my 86 year old friend, veteran of civil rights movement.

When I got there she asked me about how to get over to ATT & T building. I asked why, since we had got her phone line reestablished. She said she needed another phone, which is true, since the ringer and sound on her present phone are low. I informed her that these days’ people purchased phones in retail stores not at the ATT & T. So we took a trip to “you know who” (Wal-Mart) to find a phone. We found a simple phone and it was ATT & T. After paying for the phone she asked one of the employees where some kind of peanuts were. I did not catch what kind of peanuts she was talking about but we were directed to the can goods section of the store. I thought we were in the wrong area for peanuts when she asked another staff person for ‘boiled peanuts’. Right there on the shelf were cans of boiled peanuts. I guess it is true that Wal-Mart has everything in it. She explained to me that her mother, who is still alive at 114 years old, in southern Florida used to boil peanuts for the family.

We went back to her house, set up the new phone, which had a stronger ring and a clearer sound. As I was ready to leave she asked me to open the can of boiled peanuts which I did. She offered me one and I had it. It was just a regular looking peanut that had been boiled. The taste was okay but I prefer the ones salted not boiled. She gave me a few for the road and I came home, refreshed from the boiled peanuts visit.


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Cultural Racism in Milwaukee, Norm? - Monday, December 01, 2014

When I used the word ‘racism’ to describe taking down the basketball courts at local County Park or the activities of the Milwaukee St. Vincent de Paul Society people seem to take it personally and are offended. I certainly do not mean it that way.

I just finishing listening to an audio book about lynchings in the South in early 20th century, although it was illegal. Now I am now reading Father Bryan Massingale’s book on Racial Justice and the Catholic Church. These two books, as other experiences and reading, have helped me better to understand what people are hearing when they hear the word ‘racism’. People tend to look at racism through the eyes of early 20th century, when one person or group, usually white, does something negative to another person or group, usually Black or Latino.

Yet what I am talking about is a “cultural phenomenon, that is, a way of interpreting human color differences that pervades the collective convictions, conventions, and practices of American life.” (Massingale p. 15) Often it is an ‘unconscious racism’ operating as a negative – “yet not conscious, deliberate, or intentional – decisions making factor, due to the pervasive cultural stigma attached to dark skin color in Western culture.” (Massingale p. 23).

I believe this explains what happened in 1967–1968 during the school year at Marquette when students accused the University of “Institutional Racism”. The reaction of administrators and Jesuits was ‘we are not racist’, we allow anyone into Marquette who qualifies, despite race. However, Marquette did make institutional changes that allow blacks, many local, to attend the University, despite being black and poor. It was called the Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) and allowed many African American males and females from Milwaukee to attend Marquette University, one, a single mother on welfare, now is our congresswoman from our district.

However, I do not believe Marquette University really understood ‘institutional racism’ or made a real structural change. At a recent panel forum on the 25th anniversary of EOP program I was hoping to ask how any African Americans from Milwaukee are in the EOP today? I was not given the chance since there were no questions, dialog or comments allowed. From observation there are very few local blacks in the program today. There are many Asians, Palestinians and other low income people from over the USA in the program but it seems the barriers, institutional racism for Blacks in Milwaukee are back in place.

When I say that Milwaukee St. Vincent de Paul Society (SVDP) is “racist” I am not talking about not allowing black members or serving blacks. I am taking about structural issues that have been going on since the early 90’s where now only .03% of the 3 and half million dollar of Central Office and Council budget is going toward direct person to person home visits to people in need, the main mission of the Society. The people getting the .03% of the budget for home visits from local conferences are mostly Black and Latino. This is racism, pure and simple. Perhaps the people doing it are not even conscious of what they are doing and are not doing it deliberately or intentionally but nevertheless it is racism, and good “intentions”, like “we are going to make money for poor by serving whites in suburbs” cannot cover it up.

Racism is not segregation, necessarily. Milwaukee being the most racially segregated city in the USA, according to US census, accounts for some racism but it is not the reason why Milwaukee is rampart with cultural racism. Dontre Hamilton, an unarmed African American male, sleeping on a bench in a Public Park, committing no crime, was shot 15 times, once in the back, by a police officer over 7 months ago and yet no decision about charging or justification of the police officer has been made. The lawyer for Dontre Hamilton’s family asked why this case and many others in Milwaukee, does not get national attention like the Ferguson case. Can it be that cultural racism in Milwaukee is the norm?


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