Rev. Susan K. Smith

Rev. Susan K. Smith

(GEORGE CURRY MEDIA)—As a child growing up, I found solace in words found in the Declaration of Independence and in the Holy Bible. The Declaration of Independence says “all men are created equal…” and the Holy Bible says that God loves everyone, and that Jesus showed the agape love that was of and from God. If a person had God, I reasoned, and if a person followed the words of this nation’s Declaration of Independence, then, surely, some of the injustice, particularly racial injustice that I saw around me would surely become a thing of the past.

The myth of equality with and acceptance by “the majority population,” however, was just that -a myth. The beloved Abraham Lincoln, who freed the slaves, we were taught, was no champion for the human rights of Black people. He wasn’t interested in the well-being of Black people. In a letter he wrote to General Henry Halleck, one of the Union commanders, he wrote:  “I have not meant to leave any one in doubt. My paramount struggle is to save the Union and is not either to save or destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing all the slaves, I would do it, and if I could to it by freeing some and leaving others alone, I would also do that. What I do about slavery and the colored race, I do because it helps to save the Union…”

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