Supplemental: People admire people like this!

FRIDAY, JUNE 26, 2015

Who was Ethel Lance:
In this morning’s New York Times, Lizette Alvarez offers a profile of Ethel Lance, who died in Charleston last week.

People admire people like this. We wish the professors would stop telling these love-and-forgiveness people to stop discussing their values:
ALVAREZ (6/26/15): One by one, Ms. Lance’s five grandchildren stood in front of the congregation at Royal Missionary Baptist Church, where her body lay before the altar in a shimmering silver gown, and praised her spirit of generosity, which they hoped would be embraced by all. One of her granddaughters said the family wished her legacy to stretch beyond the bullets and bloodshed at Emanuel.

“I want my grandmother’s legacy to be a catalyst for this country to change,” she said.

Another granddaughter recalled the grits, bacon and sausage Ms. Lance cooked for her, and the love and care her grandmother showered on her after her own mother died. “My granny was the other side of my heart,” she said.

Ms. Lance worked for decades as a custodian at Gaillard Auditorium before retiring, and spent 30 years working at Emanuel.
She did not finish high school, but she made sure her children and grandchildren went to college.
Ethel Lance “worked for decades as a custodian.” She didn’t finish high school. We thought of Dr. King’s famous statement about what it takes to serve.

What does it take to serve? This is part of the way Lance made sure her children and grandchildren got to college:

“At Emanuel, Ms. Lance was the sexton, in charge of keeping her church clean seven days a week, ‘and if God had given her eight, she would have been there eight days,’ Rev. Goff said.”

People admire people like this.

For centuries, our benighted ancestors told us there were two different kinds of people in this country.

There aren’t two different kinds of people! That said, many people have received a learning experience in the past week from the “love and forgiveness” brigade. They’re being exposed to one of this country’s greatest moral and intellectual traditions, with a slightly crabby group up north begging the families to stifle themselves.

“I want my grandmother’s legacy to be a catalyst for this country to change,” one of the grandchildren said.

Recalling what Dr. King said: Delivered from within that tradition:
KING (2/4/68): Everybody can be great. Because everybody can serve.

You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t have to make your subject and your verb agree to serve. You don’t have to know about Plato and Aristotle to serve.

You don’t have to know Einstein’s theory of relativity to serve. You don’t have to know the second theory of thermodynamics in physics to serve.

You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.


  1. King misspoke just a little. He meant the second LAW of thermodynamics. I think it would be OK to correct this statement when we quote it.

    1. It is incorrect to fix errors in a quote. Quotes need to be quoted exactly as written or spoken. King's error is a fine illustration of his point.

    2. SCOTUS just fixed the Congress wording of H.R. 3590 where the written "State" now means states.

    3. You do have to know about the Ideal Gas Law to render journalistically sound service, however.

    4. Scotus was adjudicating, not quoting.

      If you change the word theory to law it changes nothing about MLK's point.

    5. @ 8:18

      SCOTUS was committing judicial activism, not adjudicating. Framers call that a big no no.

    6. Framers died a long time ago when life was different and not in a good way.

    7. "Judicial activism" was right behind "form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty" but Framers decided to stop with the top six and left judicial activism out.

      Too bad. FOTCUS would be more popular today if they left it in.

    8. @ 11:39

      Whom do you imagine would be the politicians and political advisors today who could improve on the wording of the U.S. Constitution? Professor Gruber? According to POTUS Obama life sucks more today than it did back in the 18th century.

    9. "cicero makes shit up"

      Martin Luther King 3rd

    10. @ 5:06

      Good to know MLK III is a fan of my posts. If his chameleon position on voter photo I.D. is any indication of his flexible position, next week he will pronounce my opinions as spot on.

  2. “If we embrace Andy’s idea, we help marginalized citizens secure independence from predators and ensure them our nation’s most fundamental right to vote. My father used to talk about ending the silence of good people. I cannot emphasize enough the positive impact a free and easy-to-obtain photo ID will have for those who are marginalized.”
    Martin Luther King III, son of the civil rights leader

    1. ”I think both my parents would be greatly disappointed with where our nation is now regarding the right to vote,” King said, in an interview with

      “When you consider there is almost no fraud to speak of, yet we have created more restrictions,” he added. “Why do we need to create a new ID just to get people to vote? I think my parents would constantly challenge the president and the Congress on this issue."

      Martin Luther King III

      Please cicero, next tell us the fairy tale that MLK Jr. was really a Republican. That one really makes us cry in our liberal pillows.

    2. MLK III was in favor of voting I.D. back in 2007. Why did he change his tune in 2014? Is inconsistent statements by MLK III considered "fairly tales?"

      Why did MLK III agree with Andre Young's observation about photo voter I.D. cards back in 2007?

      “It is our obligation to make sure that every citizen has the ability to obtain a government-issued photo ID, and the Social Security administration is ideal for making that happen effectively and efficiently.” Social Security has 1,300 offices around the country, and adding a photo option for cardholders would cost just 10 cents a card. In today’s world, you can’t board an airplane or get into most buildings or cash a check without predatory fees or get Medicare without a photo ID. Ensuring people have one allows them to enter the mainstream of American life and would be a help to them."

      Andrew Young, former U.N. ambassador and confidant of Martin Luther King Jr Georgia state legislature in 2007

    3. cicero keeps digging.

    4. @ 5:18

      for the truth. Libs dare not go deeper than the most superficial veneer for fear of exposing the frailty of their self righteous posturing.

    5. @ 349, 849, 1045, 634, 345, 1040, 631: don't forget to turn in your voucher to pick up your 30 cents.

    6. Sad to see cicero endorse a national ID card.

    7. @ 10:36

      The endorsement is for a free photo voting I.D. That would be issued by the state (lower case s in case the SCOTUS is reading this) the voter resides in.

  3. Strongly religious people are those most likely to be attending a midweek bible study. It is normal to idealize those who have died in eulogy. Of course the relatives are talking about forgiveness.

    Tragedies bring people together as a survival mechanism. The unity disappears when people feel less threatened. I don't see any point in talking about political change strategies in what is essentially a psychological reaction.

    A flag is a symbol. It is trivial to remove the symbol without dealing with what it symbolizes. I think this was a killing motivated by personal problems and psychosis not politics or race. I can't see how removing a flag will address that, or racism. Why are we not talking about what causes young disaffected white males to join white supremacist groups as they do in prison and on the fringes of society. That, not racism, seems to need talking about.

  4. I wonder what facts the New York Times made up about these victims.
    I learned two year ago reporter Lizette Alvarez invents facts and leaves out others. She makes heinous errors.

    I can't believe Bob Somerby waved these passages from the New York times into the blogosphere without more careful checking.

  5. It is a good thing Somerby did not have a mission of national import that caused him to take off on a Friday like Rachel Maddow. We might have missed out on another brutal cuffing by these heinous professor types and their media enablers.

  6. "They’re being exposed to one of this country’s greatest moral and intellectual traditions, with a slightly crabby group up north begging the families to stifle themselves."

    Millions are noticing that truth at a gut level, sadly not many are lucky enough to have found this blog, and won't find its perspective as effectively argued anywhere else. Thanks, Bob.

    1. And most of those few who found it have long ago stifled themselves and left.

    2. Bob keeps advancing this theme and getting a little more flagrant with his language about the crab-people, Unfortunately he has yet to show an example.

      Maybe he should create something they said and add words to it like he did with Chris Hayes a couple of posts ago.

  7. I noticed that people who oppose the investor-rights TPP are being called "Tea Party Democrats." I imagine that gets a lot of traction in Washington where everyone in power lives under the belief that the wild beast of popular democracy will swallow them whole.

    1. Shorter Somerby(*):

      See no evil- Vote Hillary! Resistance is futile. There is no alternative.


  8. Two days have passed and not a single one of Bob Somerby's readers has mentioned, much less expressed admiration for, Ethel Lance.
    Howler readers don't care about black people like Ethel Lance.