Letter to the Editor

Racism raises its ugly head

Saturday, April 3, 2004

To the editor:

Several events that I have recently experienced have taught me something that is painfully hard to deal with. Racism is still alive and well in Cape Girardeau, and it's our duty as responsible Americans to speak out against racism, bigotry and hatred in our hometown no matter what the cost.

Several youths spray painted some extremely harsh racial sentiments against African Americans on a bridge by my house, and they angered me beyond belief. For those kinds of feelings and attitudes to still be present in our society is nothing short of coarse and ill-bred. The parents of the children involved in doing the paintings treated this incident very nonchalantly. One set of parents even went as far as to remove their child from public school to avoid punishment for this cruel action of hate. To me this is heart-wrenching, because apparently people still think it is all right to hate or be prejudiced against someone because of skin color and that punishment for actions of hatred directed at people of color are not a serious matter.

I ask that everyone rise up against racism, bigotry, prejudice and hatred in our society so that our town is seen as a place of hope and tolerance for all ethnicities of human beings.

JAMES LENTS

Cape Girardeau