HomePrevious Editorials“It Takes A Pillage”

“It Takes A Pillage”

African American news from Pasadena - Editorial by Joe C. HopkinsThe writer Hans Christian Anderson wrote a story years ago entitled "The Emperor's New Clothes." The story, which has a number of versions, essentially says that there was once an emperor who was very fond of clothes. He went to his tailor and said that he needed a new outfit for an event the very next day. The tailor for some reason was afraid to tell the Emperor that he could not sew a new outfit in one day. However, the tailor came to the Emperor the next day and held out his arms feigning a suit of clothes. The tailor said to the Emperor that this was his new outfit made out of the finest of silks. In fact the silks were so fine that they seemed invisible but they were invisible only to the stupidest of people and everybody else who is intelligent could see how fine the Emperor would look.

As the story goes, the Emperor went out in public with this non-suit and the whole town knew the story but was afraid to tell the Emperor the truth. One little boy in his innocence on seeing the emperor blurted out, "The Emperor has no clothes on."

The moral of this story is that there are people who will avoid telling the truth when they are in fear of repercussions, or simply lack the courage to tell the truth if they feel it will offend someone in apparent power.

I was recently approached and asked about a situation where someone in a position of authority heard that I didn't approve of their actions. I had questions about this person's actions because I believed that they were taking advantage of people in the community and was apparently trying to keep me quiet about the particular subject. Trying to keep me quiet is a silly proposition but I have chosen not to divulge the name or the situation until I am ready.

The situation involves what I call taking advantage of the people's fear to question the authority of someone to spend the people's money in an unwise manner. But I will wait to see if the wrongful deed is completed. I will allow the person or persons in authority to search their conscience and do the right thing. The deal might not go through. If it does go through and the people are cheated because they lacked the courage to tell the "Emperor" that he is wrong. But he needs to know that everybody in town already knows about what the people already know... that he has no clothes and is the talk of the town In a manner that he shouldn't want.

An old saying goes something like the people suffer when men of good will refuse to do anything. Another saying says that it takes a VILLAGE to raise a child. Another version says, "It takes a PILLAGE" to destroy people and organizations, in a book by that title (It Takes A Pillage) by Nomi Prins.

That is why some of our schools are out of control, some of our police departments are out of control, and some of our churches are out of control, because the people refuse to tell the Emperor he is naked. Remember Board's of trustees are at fault when the people suffer and the leaders were negligent in carrying out their duties, and a PILLAGE of the organization's treasury results.

A modern day version of the Emperor story is when a leader shows his behind, though they may not tell him, everybody sees it. Remember the African proverb: "The higher the monkey climbs, the more he shows his behind."

The Bible says the people perish for lack of knowledge.  But the people also perish for lack of courage. Are you afraid to do your duty? The Bible also says, not to fear!


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