Dear editor,

It is clear from Bob Gullette's opinion piece (“Guest columnist: Writer has bad case of 'racism-itis,'” July 17-19) that he has never met Ed Powe. And that is too bad.

Mr. Powe is a kind and engaged citizen who wants only the best for Frankfort. He and Mr. Gullette just disagree on how to help Frankfort be a kinder, more equitable community.

I believe Mr. Powe is right. We need to educate ourselves, accept our past, discuss current racial inequities and act to solve them BEFORE terrible things happen here as they have in other small, quiet communities, such as Brunswick, Georgia.

Choosing to ignore our past and to just talk about the weather only allows inequities to grow and fester. It does nothing to combat the bigotry that leads to racial epitaphs scrawled on the vehicle of a Black mom in broad daylight. It does nothing to address the serious lack of teachers of color in our local school systems. It does nothing to address the inequities in our health care system, which we are seeing vividly with COVID-19.

As a white person I have learned that educating myself and talking about racism doesn't perpetuate it or make me feel guilty. But silence and inaction do. There is a long history in our country and the world of "good" people being quiet, saying nothing and thus allowing terrible things to happen.

Personally, that is not a history I want to be part of. I choose to learn and speak out (on my best days) hoping to carve a new and better path for myself and everyone in our community.    

Regina Wink-Swinford

Frankfort

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