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We are all Baltimore

Posted by Dave Griffith on August 3, 2019 at 11:45 AM

As one who works in a historic Philadelphia social service agency focused on the issues of intergenerational poverty and the associated solutions for individuals and families, and as one calling for us as a nation to join the movement to address poverty with intentional actions and investment, https/www.wearmuddyboots.com/apps/blog/show/46936679-the-movement, I cannot sit quietly while the President tweets and speaks not as a leader of all Americans, but in language that is racially changed and divisive.


I believe that our greatest strength as a nation is our diversity as a nation. We are a nation of immigrants, both willing and unwilling, but never the less, a nation where by law, citizens are equal. The reality, and our challenge, is that equality while mandated by law is clearly not in place, nor acknowledged by many in America. The equality discussion is uncomfortable for many of us as is race, gender, and poverty in America. One could argue that we are fundamentally split as a nation by our views, often based on our racial and economic status, on the issue and solutions for, equality, race, gender, and poverty.


However, that split is not one that I expect my President to exploit for political gain. That split is not one I want political platforms crafted to exploit. That split will consume us as a nation if we continue on the current trajectory, let me note one we have been on long before Trump. In the wealthiest nation on earth, founded very much on the words found on Lady Liberty in NY harbor:


Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,

With conquering limbs astride from land to land;

Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand

A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame

Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name

Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand

Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command

The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.

"Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she

With silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor,

Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,

The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.

Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,

I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"


I expect, and I suspect you do as well, our political leadership and we as individuals, to acknowledge that we want solutions that call for equality and opportunity across gender and racial lines. And we note that equality, especially access to opportunity, is very much at the heart of addressing poverty in America.


I don’t want tweets, I want leadership and I want civility as we address these difficult issues. I want truth, not only words, but thoughtful, effective, and long term affordable public policy that drive equality, access to opportunity, and that your gender or race do not define your access. I do not see such access and free enterprise to be in conflict. Twenty percent of America lives below living wage. I want leadership and our business community that has as a goal to change that reality. To do so requires leadership and us to come together and find the common ground. That common ground exists in the America I know.


Diversity is our greatest strength, let us use that diversity to move us forward and our leadership to reflect all of us.


Mr. President your base is all of us.


Categories: Muddy Boots, Leadership, Griffith Thoughts

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