First, let me thank each and every person who has stopped by, read one or more of my posts and especially those who have subscribed to this blog. Sometimes it’s hard for a writer to know if there is anyone actually reading this material. But the most convincing evidence of that is the fact that many of you have taken the time to critique a particular post by leaving a comment.
Your comments are important to me. They not only keep me on my toes, but they have provided me some ideas which I have incorporated in later posts. A recent comment left by a reader is, in fact, the reason for writing this post.
This is our exchange from the post https://juwannadoright.wordpress.com/2012/06/17/an-open-letter-to-president-obama-on-fathers-day/
You must understand–BPT (as told to me my my African American friends—”Black People Time.” What’s the rush?
I heard it as CPT (Colored People’s Time) and either term is demeaning. It implies that some people, for whatever reason, should be held to a lesser standard because otherwise, they’re not good enough to compete. If that isn’t racism and paternalism I don’t know what is.
This exchange grew out of a comment that I had made in the post regarding the fact that if there is one thing which has been consistent about the Obama presidency it is that he is consistently late.
In earlier posts I discussed tardiness several times. I know that in grammar school I was expected to be on time. It was so important that children who came to school late received “tardy slips”. Apparently our educators believe that you can’t learn anything if you aren’t present to absorb the information.
Then there was my father. He taught me that being on time was respectful of the person with whom you were meeting. I carried this lesson with me through life. It caused me to change dentists when the new one I had selected kept me waiting for one hour for each of my three appointments with her. My thinking was that if she weren’t competent at scheduling her patients, how good was the quality of service she provided me?
Let’s consider this from another standpoint – that of the farmer who gets his seed planted late – and then harvests it late as well. What kind of crop is he going to have available to sell? A poor one. Timeliness matters to the farmer and to those of us who expect these hard-working people to do their job in a timely and efficient matter so that when we go to the produce section of our supermarkets there is actually something there for us to buy.
I believe that timeliness is “mental body language.” We unconsciously manifest our attitude toward those with whom we have dealings by how we respect or how we disrespect the value of their time. It is an outward manifestation of our inner view of life.
Let’s consider this in terms of President Obama’s administration. After three and one half years we have ample evidence to support this suggestion.
When the President took office he was faced with filling important government posts. Most previous Presidents accomplished that within two months of being sworn in. It took Obama six months.
The President was faced with a crisis – it was called unemployment. The person who was capable of prioritizing should have understood that it was the most important issue on the table (and still is).
The first two years of President Obama’s administration were spent wrangling over producing a healthcare bill which the vast majority of Americans oppose and producing Dodd/Frank, a bill whose implications are so unclear that businesses are afraid to hire. The result is that we still have an official unemployment rate of 8.2% and the rate among African-Americans, the constituency who voted for the President nearly unanimously, has one twice as high.
Whether you accept my logic on punctuality may depend on whether you agree with Shakespeare’s statement, “There is nothing either good or bad but thinking makes it so.” But I can tell you that when I cast my vote this November, I am going to give it to a person whom I believe has respect for me and for all people in this country.
And I am going to cast that vote early.