Over the years I have often written that passing conversations and incidents result in columns. Last week a neighbor of mine, Janet Lemore Thompson, PhD died, and the home going ceremony was at her church, Grace Presbyterian. The message was delivered by the pastor emeritus, Rev. Johnnie Monroe. The message was brief and right on target, “She made a difference”. As we listened to those who were a part of her life reflect on the accomplishments of Janet, if it had not been for time constraints we could possibly still be there.

Tuesday was election day and for several years, in some instances, and months in others, there have been a number of Blacks who have titles, positions, jobs who have worked tirelessly on the behalf of a political candidate, particularly for mayor of Pittsburgh. I question how many of them, if any at all, understand or can possibly relate to the message “making a difference”. At this time I will not name who these people are, but I will in the near future, because the time is long overdue for these people to be exposed for what they are.

I have disagreed for many years that Pittsburgh Blacks are the most indifferent Blacks in America. However, in recent months I have come almost full circle–that may be right. Let’s analyze why certain Blacks were so diligent in their support for a certain candidate. Was it because it would benefit the Black communities? I doubt that, because in some campaigns these same people have supported candidates who had dismal track records when it came to resolving problems of Black people.


Allow me to provide you with a perfect example. These people constantly criticize the Republican Party, but they refuse to admit that the Democratic Party has been in charge of the city of Pittsburgh for more than 70 years. How do they explain the situation of Black people with unemployment at every level that becomes the driving factor of unstable homes? These people ignored the fact that one of the mayors refused to grant a building permit for Herron Hill Jr. High, because the Pittsburgh School Board was going to bus White children. These same people worked overtime to elect a mayor who insulted them by not putting one Black person in his cabinet.

The last three mayors have failed to hire Black police officers, and the last six have refused to provide Blacks with contracts except one awarded by the Pittsburgh Housing Authority, and one is definitely not acceptable. If these people have a job, it is mandatory that they support old Massa’s candidate and the same applies ito anyone seeking to get a job.

I have become increasingly angry at these Blacks I am writing about, but what helps me is the fact that there are vast numbers of people, who do make a difference. They emanate from every walk of life, not just professionals. A friend of mine, Bobby Holiday retired from the Pittsburgh Refuse department after many years, but he spent all of his life attempting to influence young people to stay focused on the positives. Yes, Bobby made a difference.

Please remember to duplicate the actions of the inmate who sent Kingsley Association $10.

(Louis “Hop” Kendrick is a weekly contributor to the Forum Page.)

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