LIMA — America is projected to become a majority-minority nation within the next several decades. But that trend – and the cultural change that comes with it – is also driving a political movement of “white fear,” as journalist Roland Martin describes it.
“It is all about white America trying to stave off where we are going,” Martin said.
“America has been a ‘white nation’ since the outset – how its power has been positioned. The problem this country now faces is we are going to be a nation (that is) majority of people of color. Our values will begin to change. That is uncomfortable. People are going to have to share power and resources. A lot of people don’t want to deal with that reality.”
Martin, a journalist and political commentator who has appeared on CNN and MSNBC, will share his thoughts on where the country is headed and how people can instigate positive change in their communities during the Community Enrichment Dinner in Lima this Thursday.
“We have to deal with this feeling of fear,” Martin said. “This fear is what’s driving folks.”
Part of the problem, according to Martin, is that Americans tend to gather in self-segregated communities, which makes it difficult to relate to other people.
“I ask – who do you go to lunch with? People get real quiet because that’s a voluntary position,” Martin said. “Are we actually diverse and inclusive? Or are we making decisions where we’re living in silos?”
“You have to break down those walls,” Martin said. “… When you have black churches and white churches who say, ‘We’re going to worship with each other,’ it forces folks to pursue that.”
The Community Enrichment Dinner, now in its tenth year, is a fundraiser for the Walter C. Potts Foundation.
This year’s dinner will bring Heisman Trophy winner Archie Griffin and will recognize former Ohio State University and NFL player William White, a Lima Senior graduate who was diagnosed with ALS in 2016.
It will spotlight a new initiative, Boost, a group of young African Americans pursuing leadership roles in Lima. The project has already placed members on boards with the Lima Symphony and United Way in an effort to increase diversity in local leadership.
Reach Mackenzi Klemann at 567-242-0456.