Saturday, February 5, 2022

I have one for Ms. Purvis

 So Gloria Purvis, BLM supporter and CRT narrative advocate for the Catholic Church, posted this:

Now, it could just be she mentioned this during Black History Month.  Perhaps she added the point that he was never recognized, just because.  You know, bit of trivia.  Why do I get the impression, however, that it's supposed to imply he was never recognized ... because he was black?

As the NFL world rebounds from yet another charge of racism from a fired black coach, I thought it might be worth pointing out that not everything that happens to black people is because they are black.  Sometimes it just happens.  Sometimes employees who happen to be no good, black or white, get canned.  Sometimes a talented and celebrated assistant coach craps out in the head position.  Sometimes a veteran is overlooked because that's what happens. 

For instance, my dad's next older brother served in WWII.  He was a medic, as he asked for something where he wouldn't have to hurt anyone.  He served with Patton in the breakout period until the end of the war.  And yes, he was involved in the legendary Battle of the Bulge.

Nonetheless, it wasn't until shortly before his death from cancer in the late 1990s that he received any decorations.  I don't know what they were, and for that matter, neither did he.  He called my dad and asked what this was all about.  Some medal and talk of an Ardennes Offensive in December, '44.  My dad chuckled and said that was the Battle of the Bulge.  He said he didn't know what it was called.  He just remembered that it was freezing and people kept trying to kill him. 

We still laugh at that.  That was my uncle.  But you see Ms. Purvis, my uncle spent most of his life being quite white.  Unless there was some vast anti-white conspiracy, it's likely the failure to recognize his heroism in that legendary battle was anything other than what happens in the bureaucracies of massive countries with the third largest population in history.  No ill will or malice.

This isn't to say no black serviceman was ever overlooked because of race.  Nor is it to say no black was ever fired because of race. That's would be an absurd suggestion.  But there are other forms of prejudice that can enter into play.  And sometimes it has nothing to do with prejudice, bigotry or racism at all. Sometimes it's just that thing Prince called Life.  Common sense should say nothing else.

But how much longer can we keep beating this horse until it is dead?  How much longer can we act as if America and Racism and Race are the only things in its existence, apart from misogyny?  Or is there any intention of not beating it until it is dead?  Who knows?  If we stop attributing everything under the sun to race and race alone, perhaps it might help us look at other reasons there are so many problems in the black community.  You never know! 


  1. Audie Murphy said that he didn't like being called the most decorated US soldier. During the War he saw men do immensely courageous things, be killed and never receive a medal. He also noted that the real heroes of his War never made it back home.

    In regard to Sailor French, I recall reading a poem about him when I was in elementary school:

    by William Rose Benet*

    I have a story fit to tell,
    In head and heart a song;
    A burning blue Pacific swell;
    A raft that was towed along.

    Out in the bloody Solomon Isles
    Destroyer Gregory gone;
    Ocean that kills for all her smiles,
    And darkness coming on.

    The Gregory’s raft bobbed on the tide
    Loaded with wounded men.
    Ensign and seaman clung her side.
    Seaward she drifted then.

    A mess-attendant, a Negro man,
    Mighty of chest and limb,
    Spoke up: “Til tow you all I can
    As long as I can swim.”

    Naked, he wound his waist with a line;
    Slipped smoothly overside,
    Where the red bubble tells the brine
    That sharks have sheared the tide.

    ‘I’m going to tow this old craft in
    Since we ain’t got not one oar’
    He breathed, as the water lapped his chin;
    And he inched that raft ashore.

    Strongly he stroked, and long he hauled
    No breath for any song.
    His wounded mates clung close, appalled.
    He towed that raft along.

    Clear to the eye the darkening swell
    Where glimmering dangers glide;
    The raft of sailors grimed from Hell
    Afloat on a smoky tide

    And a dark shoulder and muscled arm
    Lunging, steady and strong.
    The messman, their brother, who bears a charm,
    Is towing their raft along.

    He gasped, “Just say if I’m go’in right!”
    Yes, brother, right you are!
    Danger of ocean or dark of night,
    You steer by one clear star.

    Six hours crawled by. … A barge in sight
    With the raft just off the shore. . . .
    The messman coughed, “Sure, I’m all right’
    He was just as he was before.

    And all that they knew was they called him “French*
    Not quite a name to sing.
    Green jungle hell or desert trench,
    No man did a braver thing.

    He’s burned a story in my brain,
    Set in my heart a song.
    He and his like, by wave and main,
    World without end and not in vain
    Are towing this world along!

    He received a fair amount of deserved notoriety for his heroism at the time:

    1. Yep. I noticed that. I told Nate, I think this is one of those tricks today where everything you try will never be enough when they don't want it to be enough.

  2. I decided to check his Wikipedia page.
    During World War II,[1] Petty Officer First Class French swam 6–8 hours in shark-infested waters near Guadalcanal while towing a life raft with 15 USS Gregory survivors of an attack by the Japanese Imperial Navy.[6][7] For this action, French received a letter of commendation from Adm. William F. Halsey Jr. in May 1943.
    . . .
    French was memorialized on War gum trading cards and in a comic strip. The Chicago Defender named him Hero of the Year.

    So what definition is she using for "never properly honored"? Looks like he wad honored to me.

    1. Well done. I've noticed that in recent years. I stated some time ago that with black Americans, there seems to be no 'righteous Gentiles.' They don't spend much time celebrating those whites who gave it all for the cause. To hear some, you'd never know any whites did anything good.

      Plus, I've also noticed a trend of insisting anything less than 100% of the latest standard is as good as nothing. I remember when the NAACP and other rights groups were asked why there wasn't more love for Billy Graham when he died. After all, Graham was an early advocate of the 50s Civil Rights ascension. He helped put MLK on the national stage by openly embracing him. He fought segregation during his Crusades in the South. Where was the love? Easy, said one representative. He didn't join the March on Washington. Sorry, but all the work you imagined was worth something doesn't count if you don't do everything we insist.

      Same here. He may have had more recognition than most ever would, but he didn't have everything apparently, however that is defined. At best, that means none of it counted. At worst, that shows Racism(TM).

  3. Is he being singled out because he is black? Yes. But have you noticed that something like half of the canonizations in recent years have been of men and women who were religious founders? Not major founders, like St. Francis or St. Dominic, but minor founders of what seem to be obscure breakaway sub-orders. I think we can be sure that the bulk of the real Saints -- and I don't mean in the sense of "people who get to Heaven after a few thousand years in Purgatory, I mean those who go straight Up -- are people overlooked by the World, and sadly, by the Church militant and Her hierarchy.

    How can you take offense at real sacrifice and heroism, any more than at real sanctity? I only wish the fame of Charles Jackson French and of Kobe Bryant were swapped.

    1. I took offense because 1) the subtle allusion that this overlook was due to race. Not stated, but let's face it. 2) as Nate above shows, he was hardly overlooked. My uncle, on the other hand, wasn't recognized at all until the end of his life (and no hero cards or citations otherwise). Sometimes it happens. For no reason than it happens. Today, we're obsessed with race and skin color as the alpha and omega of everything. He wasn't recognized (defined please), heavy suggestion of race. Coach fired? Skin color and race? Black man wielding a gun shot by police? Skin color and race? Everything is skin color and race. Which isn't healthy by a long shot. In fact, it does nothing to solve what problems exist, and makes new problems where none were.

      Oh, and I agree about the French/Bryant swap.

    2. I know it is counted as heresy against the national cult of Mars, but not everyone who serves, even in war, is a hero. (That's to say nothing of cops and teachers and doctors and nurses and truckers and athletes and moms and dads and ... well, just about everyone has been proclaimed a "hero" and "the best and brightest" by some suck-up in recent years.) Your uncle may or may not have been a hero; you do not seem to know, and certainly you gave no details to say he was. Most servicemen did their part, which involved exposing themselves to danger and suffering, but the Silver Star should stand for something above and beyond the WW2 Victory Medal. French is not noted anywhere I have looked as receiving more than a "letter of commendation", as opposed to John Kerry, who NOMINATED HIMSELF for the Silver Star, made a show of throwing it away, and then again claimed it when he ran for president. What I am saying is there are solid but average men -- the bulk of the population who will have to win the war for you but are not extraordinary -- a few extraordinary men who are recognized, a number of extraordinary men who are overlooked, and a number of posers (invariably officers) who are decorated win, lose, or draw. The extraordinary ones are the heroes, sung or unsung; whether by extraordinary initiative or fate, they have taken greater risks and above all achieved more than the norm, for which they deserve a greater share of praise.

    3. Of course they aren't. Not everyone in anything is a hero just because they're in that thing. I would reckon my uncle to be one of those hero types because as a medic, he risked his life to save others under threat of losing his own for the cause of his country and his comrades. Greater love as they say. If putting your life on the line in combat to save others in order to fight for your country doesn't rise to the definition, I'm afraid we must have differing ideas on heroism.

      But you're missing the point. The point is, this is posted in Black History Month with a special emphasis on the idea that he hadn't been duly recognized. With a not too subtle insinuation that it was because he was black. My point is, just because he didn't doesn't mean it was because he was black. Not everything that happens to a black person is because he or she is black. Hence my uncle's story. He also was overlooked, but not because he was black. Obviously. It just happens. And as others here have pointed out, he actually was plenty recognized it turns out. So the premise itself is false, at least in suggesting nobody had ever paid attention to his accomplishments.

  4. At least EWTN had the good sense to get rid of this woman and her poison.

    1. And have they been smeared as MAGA racist white supremacists defenders for their efforts.


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