Thursday, on CBS This Morning, Republican strategist Frank Luntz moderated a group discussion about Race in America. The results were not surprising.
The discussion was sparked by anticipation over the expected reaction from the Court ruling on the recent shooting of Michael Brown; the unarmed black teenager, shot by a white police officer in Ferguson Missouri,
The political consultant assembled the panel so he could gauge public opinion on race relations in America by interviewing this diverse group of respondents.
The panel weighed in on the perennial discussion our nation engages in, about the constant struggle for different races to just get along in America.
The conversation soon heats up, in this candid discussion that addresses some of the common misconceptions and opinions that people hold as truth about race relations in America.
Incidents of police brutality, have been entwined with claims of racial prejudice and resulted in an explosions of angry protests from disgruntled citizens.
Destructive demonstrations surpass positive resolutions, as citizens take to the streets to vent their frustrations.
One of the panelist remarked that this eruption of violent protest is not a Martin Luther King type of approach to racial injustice.
This is more violent confrontation and retaliation over injustice than communication about the solutions to race relations problems.
It’s easy to topple the structure of racial unity in America. These incidents pull pieces away from the precarious construction of racial harmony. The fragile union of the races in America can be compared to a Jenga game built on shifting sand.
These are the facts. Race is an incendiary subject. Racial discrimination makes great headlines. News reports can incite people to violence and negative actions.
Racial tension in America now, is our hot lava; a steady burning, crawling destruction moving across our country.
Race relations are getting worse, the panelists say. Segregation is increasing, too, according to the diverse group. Each person who spoke on the panel was passionate about their position. Take a listen to the short tape from CBS:
Racial injustice remains a problem. American people are not working together because Americans do not trust each other.
The media has been blamed for their part in sensationalizing the reports of racial conflicts. Raw emotions can generate big reactions.
If increased racial tensions is a result of exaggerated nationwide news coverage of these kinds of events, then how can these events be stopped from happening, so there is nothing to embellish?
Even if the media exaggerates the incidents, these incidents are actually happening. Common, decent people turn into irate crusaders when race relations is the subject. What can be done?
The panel agreed there is no easy solution to dealing with race relations in America.
When the final court decision comes out about the incident in Ferguson, how the public responds, will affect that community in Missouri and resonate across America.
Actions won’t change until perceptions are changed. Citizens who trust the police won’t jump to ideas of police brutality. Neighbors who respect their neighbors won’t accuse others of being racist.
With an open mind during an honest exchange of facts and feelings; with real listening and willingness to hear, while there can still be healing conversations, America can begin to become one nation under God.
Although, it hasn’t happened yet.