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An ‘oldie but goodie’

Published: Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2013 1:06 p.m. CST • Updated: Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2013 1:12 p.m. CST

The word negro is a perfectly respectable word. It is to be found in anthropology texts and names a division of homo sapiens, Caucasian, Asian, negro, etc. It is also a past and present common surname in Italy. Very early pioneers named Negro settled in what became Selby/Hall townships.

Last spring there was one of the earliest known maps of the area, about 200 years old, posted in a window of the former variety, and there it was; Negro Creek. I remember there being a Negro that lived in Ladd and was a barber. He also served on the county board. His name was Don Negro. It would be interesting to know if he was a descendent of the family for whom the creek was named.

To change the name to Adams-Love, whose only footnote in history was to be shot in a labor argument about 80 years later, would be silly and patronizing. Now that would be playing the race card. Their only qualifying factor was that they were black.

Now the word “nigger” is not respectable. It is mean and insulting. Also it was born of hatred and prejudice. I have not heard the word or seen it in print for the last 50 years. And that includes five in Texas. Now, thanks to P. Mol & Co., efforts to eradicate it, and any word that reminds him of it, has been splashed about the Republican numerous times over the last year. A year ago, we read how P. Mol recently moved to DePue and was offended by the name Negro Creek and by children allegedly running through town yelling “Nigger Creek.” I have yet to encounter Spanish speaking children who were not polite and well-mannered.

So now P. Mol & Co. has been joined by a 20-year professional activist who is a self-proclaimed expert in social mores. These letters to all these luminaries is impressive without doubt, and in all fairness, his letters to Sen. Durbin, the Geological Society, and to President Obama, et al, did include the high probability the creek was named after Italian immigrants too, and not after a black family. The only black family was named Chris 200 years ago, and they fled after a brief residence because of fear of possible Indian trouble. It would be interesting to see a copy of the letters received by those luminaries and see it published by the Republican in the interest of all of us “citizens of the planet.”

I have wondered before about someone who moves into a community and then looks for things to be offended by. All this effort by P. Mol & Co. reminds me of an “oldie but goodie” that goes “no matter how you slice it, it is still baloney.”

Norman Hall

Princeton

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