In Boise's North End on May 1, mid-morning, you may have seen a peculiar sight: a woman scrubbing at the sidewalk. That morning, I was stopped by graffiti carved atop the sidewalk in pink chalk. In block letters the F-bomb, above the N-bomb above a swastika.
Oh, Idaho, famous for two things: potatoes and Aryan gangs, right? I cannot ignore this. I live in the North End. Many families spend their time outdoors. My neighbors do. I'll mention now that they are African-American.
I won't ignore this disgusting act by an offensive clod. To think that a grown man or woman did this appalls me. Maybe on Friday night some individuals were walking down Eastman when one of them said, "This is where that black family lives." Then another grabbed the chalk, re-establishing bad-ass status, bent and scribbled the ugly message.
Whoever wrote this isn't a 6-year-old girl riding bikes around with her younger brother. Looking down at pretty pink words, she reads them. Instantly she is damaged. Her brother asks what it says, to protect him, she lies, "Nothing." This girl will remember this forever.
I ask my Boise neighbors to have conversations with your children. Tell them the truth of people killed because of misguided hate of others. Check in with your neighbors, we need to watch out for the adults that may have done this.
Harper Lee wrote a single book. Think of all the conversations that To Kill A Mockingbird started. Lee wrote about what she knew. We need to talk about what we now know as well. We must be responsible.
I am thankful it was only chalk I scrubbed off the sidewalk. This time.
--Mary Ann Hansen, Boise
What Would Jesus Smoke?
Another reason to stop caging sick citizens who use cannabis (marijuana) that doesn't get mentioned (BW, News, "Compassionate Conservative Has Medical Marijuana On His Mind," April 13, 2010) is because it's biblically correct since Christ God Our Father, The Ecologician, indicates He created all the seed-bearing plants, saying they are all good, on literally the very first page (Genesis 1:11-12 and 29-30). The only biblical restriction placed on cannabis is that it is to be accepted with thankfulness (see 1 Timothy 4:1-5). And, "But whoever has the world's goods, and sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him?" (See 1 John 3:17.)
Jesus Christ risked jail to heal the sick.