As Tulsa Today staff return to work from our favorite holiday, we call to your attention a firsthand report from The Federalist by J. Motos Gordon detailing his thoughts of American Privilege” from arrival, “when I was about 10 years old” to adulthood.
“…people who come to this country don’t throw around that “privilege” word as if to highlight some victimhood. They keep to themselves, work hard and smart, realize how special this country is, believe in the American Dream, and go after it. They’re just happy to be here.
I grew up in a segregated neighborhood where within 3 months of our Doberman’s death, our house was burglarized 4 times. Thus, a new architectural feature: burglar bars. I can’t imagine my old neighborhood with no police to protect us. Our experience reflected the 2016 and 2019 studies showing no racial bias in police shootings—what Harvard’s Roland G. Fryer Jr. called “the most surprising result of my career.”
Year after year, this Boomer Black woman has seen the country change for the better. It was the ever-present burglar bars that made me appreciate integration all the more. Now I can live in any neighborhood I choose. As Black people moved through an integrated society, negative attitudes changed. While the Great Society’s federal poverty programs helped around the edges, the rules for some programs encouraged mothers to jettison their children’s father from the home. Fatherless children are more likely to be high school drop-outs, thus limiting their opportunities for the future. There must be more to social policy than throwing federal dollars at “the underserved.” Reliance on government money is the road to a permanent low income. This saps the recipient of dignity and the spirit of achievement.
Tulsa is not used to being the center of U.S. politics. Being strongly Republican, the Republicans don’t feel the need to campaign here and the Democrats don’t see the point. Additionally, as a flyover state, major media doesn’t pay much attention to what happens here, anyway.
However, the Coronavirus lockdowns have changed the political landscape. Because Oklahoma has not been impacted by COVID-19 as much as the rest of the country, we have also been faster at reopening. Presidential candidates, chomping at the bit to begin their campaign, have found Tulsa to be a prime location to start.
Updated Editorial: Tulsa will host President Donald J. Trump June 20, 2020 at the BOK as Elon Musk considers the area for an electric truck plant. First, for workers considering relocation, know that you will be welcome, if employed, and generally a home can be had for one fourth what a comparable property in California is valued. Low cost of living works.
Next know “Tulsa, Oklahoma Was Voted The Most Oddball Place In The State…And For Good Reasons,” according to the website Know Your State which summarizes, “Even in NBA-crazy Oklahoma City, cowboy culture defines Oklahoma. Yet in Tulsa — the smallest US city with its own ballet, opera, and symphony — country-Western radio, megachurches, and old oil money coexist with world-class museums (the Philbrook and the Gilcrease), Art Deco architecture and a trendy Downtown. Tulsa has diversified from hydrocarbons to aerospace and finance, and it’s cornerstone event is oddly international for this landlocked state: an Oktoberfest that ranks among the best anywhere…”