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Peggy McCracken


By Peggy McCracken

Tuesday, December 17, 2002

If you can't say anything  good,

don't say anything at all

Trent Lott has wiggled every which way trying to get his foot out of his mouth after making a "cute" racial remark at Sen. Strom Thurmond's 100th birthday party. He says he was "into the moment," and what came out of his mouth does not reflect what is in his heart. His explanation seems a little hollow, but I believe he means it.

I can relate to Lott's predicament, for I have been there more than once. Remarks made "in the moment" never sound the same when they are repeated - or blown up and used out of context for political purposes. That doesn't excuse the remarks, and it doesn't heal hurt feelings.

Wouldn't it be a wonderful world if we followed the sage advice: "If you can't say anything good, don't say anything at all."

In recent years, I have become keenly aware of our country's sins of the past, when races were segregated. Television serials like "I'll Fly Away," dramatizing racial bias of the 50s, leading up to integration laws; documentaries on the Holocaust and Japanese internment during World War II; videos like "500 Nations," a history of the American Indian; the movie "Dances with Wolves," and the political upheaval right here in Pecos over the past 30 years have opened my eyes to wrongs I had never considered.

Integration of races and cultures has made our lives fuller and richer. Sunday night's quarterly Baptist sing-along at Iglesia Bautista Nueva Vida brought it all into focus so well. We sang in English, Spanish and Navajo. My seatmates were Black and Hispanic. In the fellowship time, tuna sandwiches and pecan pie shared table space with sopapillas and nachos. We had a wonderful time.

In this season when we celebrate the birth of our Savior, we need to realize that He came into this world as a little baby to help all races put a face on God: not just His chosen people, the Jews, but you, me and Jose. "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." Everyone, whether white or red, black or yellow, may receive the gift of eternal life by believing in Him with the heart and confessing with the mouth.

Here is that mouth again. James says: "With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in God's likeness." James 3:9.

James also says that if anyone can control his tongue, he can control his whole body. I can't do that; can you? It is a good goal to shoot for though, and with God's help maybe we can do better in the coming year.

I'm told it's not kosher to say "Merry Christmas," but I am going to do it anyway. And Feliz Navidad too. Peace on Earth, goodwill toward men.

"Peacemakers who sow in peace raise a harvest of righteousness." James 3:18, NIV

EDITOR'S NOTE: Peggy McCracken in Enterprise business manager and webmaster. Contact her at .

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Pecos Enterprise
York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
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