Make America Great. Eventually.

“We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

I love these words. These words, commonly known as “The Preamble”, serve as the introduction to our Constitution, and hence any reading of, interpretation of, or attempted application of our written law of the land should be filtered through the prism of this preamble if you will.

In these words I read the potential for a harmonious and peaceful society.

In these words I read the potential for a society which puts the needs of people before the greed of profiteers.

In these words I read the potential for a society which wants to share the blessings of liberty not only with their own generation, but which also wishes to secure those benefits for future generations.

In essence, in these words I read the potential for America to become great. And I sincerely hope that one day we may actually aspire to such greatness.

The potential of these words notwithstanding, the fact is that due to their limited social perspectives, the intent of the authors of the preamble was to limit the scope of its application to an elitist few.

As unpleasant as it is to acknowledge, the fact is that our “founding Fathers” were the leading Aristocrats of a bigoted era, and as such our Constitution was written by those who assumed White Superiority and the subjugate role of women.

The considerations of “the general welfare” certainly did not apply to the American Indian, whose presence upon the land of rich resources was an obstruction to the greedy golddiggers from whom our nation descended.

Nor for that matter were “the blessings of liberty” to be secured for the Africans who were a product of profiteering for Northern businessmen, and all the while primarily the utility of exploitive labor for the wealthy businessmen of the South.

In essence, the scope of beneficiaries of these great words which introduce our nation’s Constitution was limited primarily to the white, landowning males of that era, and there is no reason to assume that our “founding Fathers” ever envisioned a change in the status quo for their respective posterity to follow.

And so it is that we the American people have these wonderful words as an introduction to our national law of the land, and yet we have had to struggle these past 229 years to mature and develop beyond the bigoted perspective of our own social ancestry.

To our “founding Fathers” then we owe a debt of gratitude for penning such words of potential, though we owe it to our generation and to our posterity to expand the scope of the application of the principles so documented beyond the limited scope of our bigoted past.

In essence, we the American people, may one day become a great society, when and only when, we think and operate beyond the limitations of our bigoted ancestry, by applying the potential of the Preamble of our Constitution to each and every person; with prejudice against nor preference for anyone or any class of persons; in hopes of truly securing “the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity”; hopefully henceforth and forevermore.

Dave Henderson
Denison, Texas
November 6, 2016

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On Peaceful Demonstrations

Bullies with badges and guns;
In Baton Rouge were dressed to fight.
They antagonized and intimidated the people;
It was such a frightful sight.

Peace Officers in Inglewood, California;
Simply allowed the people to have their say.
It was a Black Lives Matter demonstration;
And it was such a peaceful day.

A lesson to be learned;
Regarding public demonstrations.
There can be peace in the streets;
When there is collective communication.

My Southern Sentiments and My Personal Conclusion Regarding The Confederate Flag

June 28, 2015

Two nights ago I watched the complete Eulogy which President Obama delivered in the memory of one of the nine victims of last week’s terrorist attack in Charleston; the good Reverend Clementa Pinckney.

Now, I have heard many sermons, speeches, and eulogies in my life, but I am not sure that I have ever heard a more moving and effective Eulogy than that delivered in the memory of the good Reverend, when President Obama spoke on his behalf Friday afternoon in Charleston. President Obama not only eloquently eulogized Reverend Pinckney himself; but he likewise spoke on behalf of the other 8 victims of the terrorist attack, and in the process he quite passionately represented an entire race of people who were actually the overall intended victim of a terrorist plot hatched in the mind of one who was raised to hate, and who then acted accordingly. (That is the scariest aspect of hatred. The only thing which distinguishes the murderer from the hater is that the murderer acts in accord with the hate. That is a scary and a sobering thought. Or so it seems to me.)

As my wife and I watched the President’s speech unfold; we periodically wiped tears from our eyes as our Nation’s leader proceeded to lay out before the entire nation; a case based upon the pain of being the victim of systematic social terrorism. And a clearly emotionally charged and inner afflicted President Obama soberly challenged us to think our way past the hatred and hostility of our era, in search of peace and harmony. The lump in my throat that night seemed a constant reminder of the obstacles that our President so clearly cited, and the challenge which he put before us all to overcome and conquer those obstacles which seem to so constantly beset us has laid heavily on my mind ever since.

Now, among the topics which our President so eloquently addressed in Reverend Pinckney’s eulogy, was that of the Confederate Flag. And, under the circumstances, with good reason. For the climate of white supremacy and racial hatred which abounds all too ever present in my beloved Southland, did in fact influence the thinking of, and the subsequent actions of Reverend Pinckney’s murderer. Consequently, the good Reverend and eight other innocent victims were maliciously executed, and now a lot of innocent people mourn. And whether we white Southerners choose to acknowledge reality or not; the fact is that our Confederate Flag is in fact a symbol of white supremacy and racial hatred, and furthermore is in fact a rallying symbol for those who choose to think thusly, and finally and fore mostly such did in fact influence the shameless murder of nine innocent people in Charleston last week.

Have we white Southerners no shame? Can we not connect the dots of reality without forming a Confederate symbol in the process? Are we so obsessed with an antiquated symbol which inflicts pain and which incites hostility that we cannot honor our ancestors by merely living good and decent lives?

As I see the situation; we white Southerners can put our heads in the sand and tattoo the Confederate Flag on our butts in such a way as to exhibit our ignorance and our insensitivity for all the world to behold, or we can wake up and realize that the year is 2015, and Richmond is no longer the Capital.

Now please understand my perspective: I am a born and raised Texan of multi generational Southern roots, and am of an ancestral heritage which ties me directly to the Confederate States of America on both sides of my family. As such, I hate to even carry a Five Dollar Bill in my wallet, because when I see the image of Abraham Lincoln, I see the image of a man who is in my judgment beneath contempt. As far as I am concerned, Abraham Lincoln was a cruel and insensitive tyrant who should have been brought up on charges as a War Criminal for utilizing his role as President to endorse the inhumane oppression and systematic efforts of regional genocide of innocent Southern citizens; especially during the last year of the War (I have a similar opinion of George W Bush with regards to endorsing the torture of my fellow human beings during the Iraq War). Furthermore, I cringe every time Abraham Lincoln is given credit for freeing the slaves, since he did not free a single slave at any point in time. (The truth be told, the Emancipation Proclamation did not free a single slave, nor was it effected to that end. In fact, the Emancipation Proclamation actually AUTHORIZED the ongoing practice of slavery in the North and in specific regions of the South which were already under Northern control). And so it is my personal opinion, that if Abraham Lincoln had actually been the beacon of humanitarian concern that his image has come to represent in the history accounts, that he would have neither endorsed shameless and inhumane acts against innocent citizens of the South (which he did); and he would have freed the slaves under his jurisdiction (which he did not).

In addition to my low opinion of Mr. Lincoln as a person, my sympathies for my beloved Southland are as natural as anyone else’s love for their home and their heritage. Consequently, I have a hard time withholding further feelings of resentment for the free pass which has traditionally been given to the Northerners who were regularly involved in the slave trade, while my ancestors serve as the scapegoat for the national sin of human trafficking and institutionalized slavery. Thus, my shame for the crimes of my southern ancestors against humanity, is matched with my contempt for the Northern mariners who enabled the process and who profited handsomely by the transport and the sale of captured and maltreated African people. The fact is that slavery was a national sin; and was a shameful act of cruelty and insensitivity for which everyone actually involved should be forever known as shameful representatives of the human race.

Now all that said, I ask of my fellow white Southerners just how the displaying of the Confederate Flag in any way affects a change as to the injustices against the Southern people during the war, or how such in any way corrects the Northern biased misinformation and revisionist history regarding the same?

Will the displaying of the Confederate flag somehow enlighten the general public to the fact the Ulysses S Grant owned slaves until he was forced by law to free them (after the War); or to the fact that Robert E Lee was an Abolitionist who released the slaves that he received as an inheritance (before The Emancipation Proclamation)?

Will the displaying of the Confederate flag somehow spare our Southern women who were raped so routinely by General Hooker’s men that the very term “hooker” evolved from these heinous and barbaric war crimes which took place under his jurisdiction?

Or will the displaying of the Confederate flag somehow resurrect those countless Southern families who starved to death because their homes and all means of producing food were systematically destroyed by the likes of Sherman and Sheridan?

Speaking for myself, I have no problem thinking of the likes of Lincoln, Hooker, Sherman, and Sheridan as no good damned Yankees whose graves I would spit upon were it not for the fact that I have higher standards for my bodily fluids than the resting place of their long gone bodies.

However; I will be damned if I will justify being party to ongoing hostilities and hatred in the here and now, by displaying a symbol of such due to my contempt for the likes of Yankee war criminals who lived way back then.

Nor will I justify to myself the display of a symbol which, over the past 150 years has become a rallying cry for public torture, lynchings, church bombings, burnings and mass shootings; under the guise of honoring my ancestors by such a display.

And so I speak from the heart, as one Southern male to all my compatriot white Southerners, when I write these words:

The Confederate Flag has got to go!

We white Southerners simply must wake up to the reality, that whether we would have such to be the case or not, that over the course of the past 150 years the Confederate Flag has become the symbol of racism and hatred by those who have ignorantly claimed racial superiority, and yet who have conducted themselves in base and shameful ways as they have subjugated, tortured, and murdered African Americans, in their misguided efforts to cling to the antiquated myth of white supremacy.

Like it or not; perception is reality; and we cannot undo the history of the Jim Crow era ,of the beatings, of the torture, of the lynchings, and of the climate of hostility and hatred towards the black race in general and the black male specifically, which has been all too readily represented in our beloved Southland over the entire 20th Century, and even up to the present time. Surely anyone who is even vaguely socially aware must realize that the maltreatment of the black race by our Southern culture of assumed racial superiority has been an ongoing social ill, which unfortunately has been continuously represented by the symbol of the Confederate flag.

With these thoughts in mind, as a son of the South; as a descendent of several confederate veterans, but more importantly as a human being, I offer this heartfelt and passionate appeal to my fellow white Southerners:

Let us put aside that which unfortunately has become a symbol of hatred, bigotry, and racism; and let us so live as to sustain peace and harmony with all the family of humanity; instead of inciting hostility in the name of honoring our ancestry.

For the sake of humanity, and for the cause of social harmony:

The Confederate Flag has got to go.

And so I challenge my compatriot white Southerners: Choose ye this day how to honor your ancestors, but as for me, David Lee Henderson, a proud Son of the South; I will choose mine. For I choose to honor my fallen dead the best way I know how, and that is by simply being the best person that I know how to be on a daily basis, in the here and in the now; and by loving all people with no distinctions nor partiality, in the here and in the now, and by as far as is possible in me, to live peaceably with all my fellow members of the family of humanity, in the here and the now.

And for the life of me people; I simply do not see how I can do so, while at the same time displaying a symbol of ongoing hatred and hostility in the process.

The Confederate Flag simply has got to go.

And to quote another famous yet fictitious Southerner:

That’s all I got to say about that.

Dave Henderson
Denison, Texas

Hero With A Cell Phone

I have read this morning that the McKinney, Texas Policeman who was filmed over the weekend terrorizing a group of teens, tackling and bullying an unarmed teen girl, and pulling a gun on unarmed youths has resigned from the McKinney Police force.

This is wonderful news, and I hope that he seeks another line of work, for he has demonstrated that he is certainly not qualified to be a peace officer.

The true hero in this scenario is the youth who had the guts and the integrity to pull his cell phone and film what was happening. The fact of the matter is that without the video, that foul mouthed bully would still be patrolling the streets of McKinney with the false impression that he was still “the man”.

“The man” in this case was the young man filming yet another case of police brutality which would have gone unchecked had that video not been posted to You Tube on Saturday. Young man who did the filming, and then posted to You Tube: YOU DA MAN!!

In this regards, chalk up another social victory scored with a phone video. Let’s keep this up!! We have got to rid our streets of the “thugs in Blue” one by one until our streets are protected by peace officers instead of being patrolled by bullies with badges and guns. Our way to fight back is with videos.

Keep up the good work you social heroes with the cell phone cameras!!!!!

Bullies With Badges and Guns

Bullies with badges and guns,
Are no officers of peace.
Too many bullies with badges and guns,
Are patrolling our nation’s streets.

Bad cops have got to go.
This my realization.
Bullies with badges and guns,
Are no good for our sovereign nation.

They who are the problem,
Are by no means the solution.
Bad cops got to go,
This my resolution.

Bullies with badges and guns,
Are no officers of peace.
Too many bullies with badges and guns,
Are patrolling our nation’s streets.

America, On Any Given Day

Preacherman say,
There’s a god up in heaven.
Loved you enough to make hell,
Eat your bread with no leaven.

Gambler say,
Seven come eleven.
Mathematician say,
Six before seven.

Policeman say,
Time to walk the beat.
Another unarmed black man,
Lies dead in the street.

Businessman say,
Accept pennies for your work.
Wipes his forehead with a money roll,
That dude’s a real jerk.

Two men wanna make love,
Politician get angry and vent.
Oil man say time for war,
Politician say “Where you want the troops sent?”

An oldie but goodie:
“Livin’ In The USA”
Scenes from America;
On Any Given Day.

Dave Henderson
Denison, Texas