Stories about our own histories and experience of life have tremendous and enduring power to confront the racial hatreds and lies so common in contemporary media.

Today, March 14, is ‘National Write Your Story Day’. our own personal ‘news media’. So we speak and write so as to narrate the experiences of life that are our own, yet shared by others who might relate to it. That activity of self-expression is at the root of Holy Scripture, narrated in story form in a manner that entices the readers to see themselves in the story

Writing our stories often presents another narrative that is contrary to the ideas propagated by others. That innate ability of each to tell tales empowers us from that very human uniqueness to confront ideas that we regard as hostile to our own. And the act of presenting our own experiences enables us to offer a contribution in the public square that others may neither read nor hear elsewhere. Only the speaker or the writer can authentically relate the unique autobiographies residing within personal memory so as to confront the collective, the herd mentality that places greater value on conformity than the worth of individual contribution to the whole. That contribution is essential to any healthy culture desirous of its own survival.


Well, most of me is. It’s about this annoying little dab of Iroquois blood in my arteries courtesy of my ancestor. Ol’ Henri LaRochambeau (surname changed to protect the guilty) apparently had little taste for those anemic French ladies up yonder on the north shore of the St. Lawrence River in late 18th century Quebec. Noooo, he just had to have one of those way-hot Iroquois babes. So he married one… my great-great-grandma. And if the family legend be believed, unless it’s a bunch of ‘legend’, more than one in serial fashion. Yeah, Henri was by reputation into a bit of unrecognized polygamy. That’s why some Iroquois warriors eventually showed up to kill him…

But before the lusty fool succumbed to an aggregation of spears and arrows, he furthered my maternal family’s bloodline, himself heir to a land grant provided by Louis XIV to a minor nobleman for services rendered. My own mother bore the same surname. Direct lineage…

However, that little dab of Iroquois blood matters not to the contemporary racial attack forces. For I must bear the stigma of that off-white skin color afforded by our Creator to all of us Caucasians. Such a guilty lot are we, all of whom were no doubt born of European wealth, privileged, and so very lillie-white. Well I must admit that as owners of a land grant, the Québécois line began well. But read on, for not all of the LaRochambeau descendants fared so well. I know, so now I tell my own story…

Limestone statuette of a seated beardless male votary writing on a scroll
Cypriot; Statuette of a poet: Metropolitan Museum of Art, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons


Now how about some truth, if that matters in this age of racial gaslighting and systemic false witness? Every time I am confronted with objectors to my alleged ‘white-male-privilege’, I merely inquire of them, “Tell me, when did you live in someone else’s garage??”

Now let me tell you about the garage. It was the winter of 1951, and a freshly-divorced woman with a son about to turn five years of age received the mercies of a Christian family who had a somewhat furnished garage. One bare light bulb hung by its own electric cord from a ceiling over a workbench made of common construction lumber. There was an old ‘Ben Franklin’ potbelly coal stove that managed to keep the garage and its occupants warm, and the boy was given a small pail to help Mommy carry ashes outside. A small, single-unit hot-plate served to heat the Cream of Wheat, the oatmeal, or the cereal du jour in the mornings, and the mother sometimes suspended bread over it until toasted. Mother and son kept minimal milk and other cold items on hand from the neighborhood grocery just outside the door. The mother slept on a surplus military bunk bed, she on the lower, the little boy on the top bunk. One night, the boy awakened to witness his mother shouting and chasing after something in the garage with a broom, a small scurrying creature with a long tail.

They ate supper and spent some evenings in the crowded house where the boy remained in the care of the Christian woman during the day, while the mother worked as an assistant bookkeeper for scant compensation. But that was post-WW II and the early days of the Korean conflict, not an optimal time for a divorce with a child to support on $15.00 per week and $10.00 from Daddy by Court order.

In the Spring, they graduated to single-room apartments with a Murphy bed and an ‘ice box’, the primitive precursor of the refrigerator. In 1958, they landed in a mediocre half-double with a shared bathroom (yes, shared with the other side). Lord have mercy if I left the hook on the door to the other side after I finished. And with some assistance the mother was enabled to buy a used car when the boy entered eighth-grade. Movin’ right up the social ladder…

The boy recalled later in life that he seemed to have been the only child of a single parent family in any neighborhood, and that others including the blacks and Hispanics lived in houses while he and his mother had eventually graduated into half-doubles with a shared bathroom. His first girlfriend was a Mexican immigrant, his friends her three brothers. The high school years were similar.

If the reader has not noticed by now this white boy’s utter antagonism toward the purveyors of ‘white-skin-syndrome’, I will spring it on you now in Kamala Harris manner: “That little boy was me!!” But how can that be? For For I confess to you, brothers and sisters, as one influenced by General Thoroughly-Modern Milley, that I am white


A library website blurb advertising Robin DiAngelo’s latest high-dollar pack of fabrications informs us that “Racism will not be interrupted by a hug or a smile. Dismantling white supremacy requires white people to commit to a lifetime of education and accountability.” Bettina Love of Columbia University who was privileged to attend Catholic schools makes no secret of informing whites that we cannot escape our whiteness and must spend the rest of our lives in something akin to sackcloth and ashes in perpetual repentance.

So why don’t we give their sort some re-education that these sin-loving wretches so desperately need? Tell your own stories!

I began my work life in the labor ranks. I eventually got into long-haul trucking, went through three degree programs and part of a fourth, had to go back into trucking, was eventually enabled to return to two theological seminaries and ordained into the Lutheran ministry. I did it the same way ‘persons of color’ can and have done it, striving for excellence, overcoming the negatives of life, taking advantage of commonly available loans and scholarships, and paid them all back. I did it by doing what I had to do while looking for opportunities to further myself and what I ought to do before the God Who redeemed me.

Please note that I did not do it by bearing a false witness against my neighbors, peddling demonstrably malicious propaganda, gaslighting blacks into believing that they are of substandard intellect and ability and are not able to do the same because of the skin color of my fellow (mostly) whites, whom the wealthy DeAngelos and Ibram Kendis of this world don’t mind smearing with money-making false witness against their neighbors.


Kubo Shunman, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

We who wage war against these distortions of reality do not need to be similarly confrontational. And we certainly ought not to return false witness for false witness. Not that we are above such in matters of social conflict, but that it is not a very smart tactic. Then how do we engage the evil with the good?

First, we must tell our own stories as I have above, and that not only about our successes, but also about our endurances and our failures along the journey. We who grew up among the poor Whites beside the Latins and the Blacks seem to be absent from the typical enumeration of the disadvantaged. The truth is that we struggled with the others to rise above their circumstances and have every right and obligation to declare our stories from the housetops, and in the media. The Dr. Ben Carsons of this life are right there with us as we reinforce our commonalities, telling and re-telling our stories of simply doing what we found to do along our individual journeys. In this we find each other.

Second, take careful note of what I said above, that the lower white working class is never, ever, included in categories of the disadvantaged merely due to the color of our skin. We must expose these willful omissions on the part of the race-baiters, presenting the experiences of the poor and lower class in which whites have our roots, side-by-side with blacks, and from which we garnered much of life’s wisdom. We might do well to ask why Hispanics and Asians also play such a minor role in the contentions, as much racial hatred and violence is perpetrated against them. In short, look for the omissions and supply them with stories of our own realities.


Creative Stall, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

To perpetuate this race-card-orgy madness is madness itself. The opposition fails to take note that classists and racists of whatever skin color who must support their contentions against others with falsehood insure their own eventual demise . For lies have this annoying tendency to come back to bite those who tell them. And the Hebrew-Christian ethic of the love of God and of neighbor condemns the bearing of false witness against another. So tell your stories, freely, and in truth,

Father David+

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