By Grace L. Galloway
Once upon a time around the turn of the 20th century, there lived a man who equated imperialism with masculinity and ambition while denouncing isolationism as lazy and cowardly. He argued that imperialists were not greedy but courageous instead. He claimed that "we do not admire the man of timid peace. We admire the man who embodies victorious effort." He was also rumored to have had several extra marital affairs while in the White House with a voracious sexual appetite. This man was President Teddy Roosevelt considered to be one of our finest Presidents – which I believe to be true. What this man did for America with his conservatism and love of nature is unparalleled.
Once upon a time during the depression, there lived a man who wrote more executive orders than any other president other than George Washington. He also had a voracious sexual appetite and had extra-marital affairs. But what he did for America with the New Deal, how he turned the Great Depression around, his ultimate concern for his fellow man made him too one of our great Presidents.
Once upon a time during WWII a bespectacled, seemingly unassuming man dropped the A-bomb not once but twice on Japan and while controversial and vilified for what his critics called callousness, ended the war thus saving millions of lives. It was said by some that he too had some extra-marital affairs. This man was Harry Truman – no doubt that he was one of our greatest. We remember him as "the Buck Stops here" Truman.
Once upon a time in the 1960s a tall, lanky Texan orchestrated the Gulf of Tonkin thus leading us into a bloody and costly war. A heinous act. He too had a voracious sexual appetite. But he also led us into the era of Civil Rights and the War on Poverty. This man was Lyndon B. Johnson and for all his mistakes we still honor him for his good works.
Once upon a time in the 1990s a young governor from Arkansas was accused of sexual intimidation, even murder. Yet he was elected President. Then he was found to have had sexual relations outside of his marriage while in the White House. Yet he gave us 8 years of peace and prosperity and the latter is what we remember him fondly for. Indeed he is still my most favorite Prez.
Then we have Dr. Ben Chavis – who did nothing as egregious as causing millions of deaths, but who was accused in the 1990s of some sexual misconduct. He is also well known for his Civil Rights activity, for engaging the youth in social events and democracy, for philantrophy….yet the only thing remembered about Dr. Chavis is that he is a sexual predator. Shades of Willie Horton.
Does anyone see the glaring difference between all of the above mentioned and Dr. Ben Chavis?? Does anyone see how a different yardstick is used to measure Dr. Chavis’ actions as the others? Does anyone see it? And does anyone see yet one more glaring difference? Yes. Dr. Ben Chavis is the only Black man in the group.