Some thinking about our world as more than a collection of nations acting separately. Can you imagine if any one segment of America was suddenly treated as “second class” and segregated from the population at large with different rules and status. Whoa! Wait a minute.
In reading the following passage from Wikipedia, it occurs to me America has almost done the same thing in its past with the Native American peoples:
(from Wikipedia on Apartheid):
"… and "Indian", with Indian and coloured divided into several sub-classifications, and residential areas were segregated, sometimes by forced removals. Non-white political representation was abolished in 1970, and starting in that year black people were deprived of their citizenship, legally becoming citizens of one of ten tribally based self-governing homelands called bantustans, four of which became nominally independent states.”
In America’s past, people were forcibly relocated and segregated into areas called “Reservations" and these were later recognized as sovereign nations within the borders of our country.
In any event, the conversation I had online went like this:
Centauri4: (posted on other social media)
I do not live in Pickens County (South Carolina), but I believe the department of any public official has a higher DUTY and OBLIGATION to serve the public, the people of their county, and NOT treat the department as his or her personal kingdom.
The issue of honoring a former foreign dignitary is one of respect and reverence for their visit or passing (death), so I would like to ask IF Nelson Mandela had visited Pickens County during his lifetime, would the Sheriff have refused to provide protection for him? Okay, it is sort of the same thing, only in this case you are protecting the memory of someone nearly everyone in the world respects and admires as a public figure, person of character and leader among men. Protecting. Get it?
I also believe the lowering of a nation’s flag in the front of a government building should be done in accordance with county guidelines OR the wishes of the County Board of Supervisors; whoever is ACTUALLY in charge of government services in the county. The decision certainly should not be left to a single individual who is merely the representative of the people and a representative of the laws of that jurisdiction.
Otherwise, best wishes for a safe and happy holiday season and definitely be careful to there while serving and protecting.
The people are watching.
I disagree. [The] American flag or flag of any other nation should only be lowered to honor their heroes. People who made their sacrifice for their country.
I understand your point. However, I also think the world is getting more connected now than it has ever been before, more connected from the perspective that my neighbor is my brother and my nation is me. This is a little different from generations gone by where any country could act with impunity or unilaterally and shun the consensus, the meaning of even symbolic actions.
This is what my point was in “protesting” the apparent independence of a single person within a county government. Perhaps the Sheriff did speak with the Mayor or City Council and there was consensus the flags of all county offices would not be lowered out of respect for Nelson Mandela, but that was not the way the story got reported. So my thinking was about a single individual thinking he had the authority to make a decision AND take action that could potentially misrepresent the opinions of an entire population of people (i.e. the citizens of Pickens County).
South Africa is a nation friendly to the United States as far as I know. They are governed now by a mostly democratic process and this is largely in part due to the changes set in motion by Nelson Mandela. The sacrifice Mr. Mandela made in resisting the governing policies of Apartheid, a system of racial segregation in South Africa enforced through legislation by the National Party (NP) governments, the ruling party from 1948 to 1994.
I cannot even realistically imagine giving up everything I own and being sentenced to prison here in America in defense of some injustice in which I believed, but if it impacted my family and people were dying, it is something I would do.
This is really an amazing and powerful commitment to people, to family, to neighbors, friends and even strangers, and I think it is an event in the history of the world worthy of a small sign of respect. I do not think the soldiers of America would object very much if there was a modern figure in Afghanistan who rose up, took the lead against oppression and injustice in that country, and allowed all of them to come home for good. — They would probably say, ‘Wow, thanks man!!’ as they boarded the planes for home.
This is the level of commitment a single man can represent in the world and it is an extremely rare thing. It is something we could use more of, and I think that is an idea worth doing a little extra to encourage.