Welcome to my Blog - What Is A Blog?

A blog is a personal diary. A daily pulpit. A collaborative space. ... Your blog is whatever you want it to be.

For many years I have kept a journal, which I don't write in as much as I once did. I have an inner yearning to communicate with the world through writing and pictures Part of my motivation is to leave something behind to a world that has given me so much - a mom, dad, brother, grandparents, a loving wife, high spirited and gifted sons, close friends and loyal customers. Most of us have had some help along the way to get where we are. In my 12 step program, step 12 is about giving back to others. I hope there are posts here that will warm your heart, make you smile and make you think. That is what my blog is all about. I hope you enjoy it. Ken

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

A letter to a journalist about bigotry and predjudice

I just finished writing a short letter to a terrific writer and well accomplished journalist, here in MN. It's about the ugly face of prejudice. His name is Syl Jones and he has a website: http://www.syljones.com/index.html

He's one of the better writers about social injustice. Here's my letter:

Dear Syl,

I’ve always read and enjoyed your editorial comments in the Star Tribune.

We met a long time ago when I self published a book called “Wellness and Weight Loss, Ten Things You Need to Know" and gave you a copy to read.

I live in Shorewood and moved here from CA in 1994.

Over the years, you’ve captured, in the written word, the epitome of the passive/aggressive persona’s of many a Minnesotan. As an American Jew, I've experienced more than my share of anti-Semitic slurs by “whitey,” if you will.

I didn’t choose to be Jewish but was born this way. Since it’s a good religion with a deep and wide history, I choose to remain a Jew.

So, here’s why I’m writing. I was at the Dakota Jazz club on Monday to see one of my favorite musicians, Duke Robillard. His website: http://www.dukerobillard.com/

At the Dakota, on the main floor, we were seated adjacent to a table with another party. As we were seated, before the show started, a man and his maybe son in law were discussing World War II. I don’t know where and how this came up but at some point I heard the older man, a lawyer, talking about a German who ran a bar in Wayzata. Then the kid made the statement that “there aren’t any Jews in Wayzata.” The old man adds, “yea Klaus stacked ‘em up high” in his bar.

My hearing isn't as good as it used to be but I heard it. Had I not been feeling slightly under the weather, I’d have called him on it. But I did not. I’m sorry I did not. After awhile, though I think the old man realized a Jew was seated beside him. He started coughing and I kept saying to myself, “I hope you die you SOB.” That’s how I felt.

I’d like to write a story to submit to the Star Tribune or the LA Times to share this story.

I’d like to tie it in to my father being a World War II Veteran, a Jew, who served our country, who was shot down in his B17 after bombing Stuttgart and then was captured as a POW for almost two years. I’d also like to share about my mother and father in law, from Poland who endured the atrocities of the Holocaust and were held in inhospitable places like Auschwitz and Dachau.

My tongue must be too sharp because every time I’ve written a letter to the editor, it never gets published in the STRIB.

I guess I’m writing and venting because I’d sure appreciate some words of encouragement on how to write a story that could get published in a National Newspaper. I do write feature articles for the BMW Owner’s News magazine and Melody Beattie, bestselling author of books like CoDependent No More has been my writing mentor. I’ve been working for the past 4+ years on a story about my addicted son called “Magic Sam’s Disappearing Act.” In it I tell my story about how I've managed to cope and stay sober while, at times, going through living hell. http://melodybeattie.com/welcome1.html and her Grief Website: http://melodybeattie.net/ (grieving any loss? A great site).

Living in MN, I sometimes feel like I’m a magnet for these anti-Semites because every now and then I have these ugly experiences.

I’m wondering if I wrote something, maybe timed towards Holocaust Remembrance Day, if I could send it to you to have you critique my story so an editor could take a look and say “I like this and I’m going to run this in my paper.”

Finally, I’ve been dividing my time between MN and Houston (for work). I visited the Houston Holocaust Museum last Sunday and filmed this clip with my FLIP video camera.

What I don’t include in this video, when you see the box car that was used to transport my people to the death camps is that the German Railroads charged the Nazi’s passage for transporting men, women, children and elders on their one way trips to the death camps. Pretty sick, huh?

WARNING: Powerful Video - Not for the faint of Heart


On that happy note, thanks for providing your email address so I could vent, write and get this out of my system for the time being. I hope you have a nice Thanksgiving holiday!


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