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MY LINKS BY ROBERT PAUL REYES

My Turn By Robert Paul Reyes: My Newspaper Column
My Version Of The Truth By Robert Paul Reyes: My Personal Home Page
My Anti-war Essays: Anti-War Essays
My GoodYear Blimp Essays: Sue Me! I Love The Blimp.
Star Wars Hype: An Essay About Star Wars
Jerry Falwell By Robert Paul Reyes: Two Essays About Jerry Falwell
Jury Duty : An essay about my experience as a juror.
Albert Einstein: An essay about Albert Einstein
NewsMax.Com: List Of Top Columnists
Selected Archive Of My Columns (1999):
Selected Archive Of My Columns (1998):
Latino Columnists: List Of Top Latino Columnists
Saturn Of Oakland: Don't patronize Saturn Of Oakland California

Robert Paul Reyes

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SOME    INFO    ABOUT    ROBERT    PAUL    REYES

"The world of "cyber-journalism" continues to prosper by reflecting intelligently on issues that the mainstream press insists on marginalizing or simplifying into irrelevance.

The NATO-directed propaganda concerning the Kosovo crisis is one such example. Into the breach step such writers as Robert Paul Reyes who provides an extensive archive of short, smartly-written cyber columns for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

As well as writing thought-provoking anti-war essays, Robert Paul Reyes muses on such contemporary issues as the Columbine High School massacre, the insuffering hype over Star Wars and numerous other subjects.

He also provides essays written in Spanish. If only the mainstream media could provide columnists of this calibre!!"

THE   COMPLEXITY   OF   RACISM

THE truth about race is not as simple as black and white. It is a complex issue viewed in many hues and many shades.

We are a multicultural society and that is our greatest strength. Let us resolve not to let it become our greatest weakness. Our cultural diversity is a wellspring that nourishes and invigorates us with new thoughts and new ideas. It keeps our nation from becoming intellectually stagnant and culturally stale.

Each new wave of immigrants floods our shores with infectious optimism and hope. It would be an unpardonable sin if we allowed this great resource to poison our minds with distrust and hatred. It is noble and necessary to decry racism and to preach that all men are brothers under the skin, but you must make that belief into a living reality.

The battle against racism and xenophobia is won one heart and one mind at a time. Each day, seek to learn from and to show love to one person from a different background than you. Sometimes we are confronted with racism and prejudice in all of its naked ugliness. An army of ragtag neo-Nazis goose-stepping through a Jewish neighborhood. A skinhead hurling a racial epithet at an African American. A qualified woman denied membership in an all-male organization. It is easy and popular to make a stand against such blatant bigotry. However, racism is usually more insidious and less conspicuous. It may present itself in the guise of a questionable joke about a racial minority. There is the temptation not to object, not to make waves. To just go along. It takes more courage to speak out against this subtle form of racism.

I'm here to proclaim that we need to have zero tolerance for racism. I will condemn the skinhead who brutally beats a person merely because of the color of his skin, but I will also object when someone makes a racist joke.

An anecdote illustrates just how subtle prejudice can be, and that racism is a virulent germ that infects people everywhere:

An elderly Chinese lady enters a bus and gingerly walks by several empty seats and plops down next to me. I notice that African Americans are seated next to all the empty seats she passed by. She nervously clutches her purse as her eyes dart in every direction. Although she doesn't deign to look in my direction, she feels safe sitting next to me because I am not black. I am not one to tolerate or condone racism in any shape, way or form, but I am at a loss as to how to deal with her irrational fear of African Americans. Should I hit her and grab her purse to demonstrate that muggers and criminals come in all colors?

I feel helpless and frustrated when providence directs my gaze to a black female sitting by herself. I jump out of my seat and sit next to her. I send out a silent prayer that a black man will sit next to that elderly Asian woman I left behind, a black man who will start a conversation with her and show her that he is a human being just like her.

I feel good about myself. I have killed two birds with one stone. I have started up a conversation with a beautiful black woman and have struck a blow against racism at the same time.

1999 Robert Paul Reyes


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