Monthly Archives: May 2020

Amy Cooper


Responding to a story in The New York Times last week:

“White Woman Is Fired After Calling Police on Black Man in Central Park: Video of the incident touched off intense discussions about the history of black people being falsely reported to the police.”

by Sarah Maslin Nir

The New York Times

May 26, 2020

I wrote the following comment, which was posted by the Times:

This is a very sad outcome. Ms. Cooper should NOT have been fired. Franklin Templeton fired her not because they CARE — it’s a public relations (read, bottom line) issue for them.

I am not a racist; I am the opposite. I think that the story should be told and understood as an example of what blacks undergo when it comes to their “offenses” being reported to the police. Recent examples of black “suspects” being shot and innocent blacks being harassed for being in places where someone decided they should not be horrify me.

Ms. Cooper did not handle the situation well. But this was, as the police noted, basically an argument. (Yes, she did call the police.) I am usually considered polite and un-offensive, yet I have gotten into stupid arguments many times with people in New York … it kind of goes with the territory. Often, it seemed to me that the other person was being overly intrusive or controlling, or taking offense such as when the subway lurched a while ago and I stepped on a woman’s foot, said I am sorry, and she hit me in the back.

Ms. Cooper lost her cool and did not handle the situation well. Mr. Cooper was in the right as far as the leash law is concerned. Ms. Cooper has apologized. That should be sufficient. The punishment does not fit the crime. People in their rush to judgment and to take offense have lost all sense of perspective. She should be enabled to learn from the situation. It appears that she could do so.

Seven people clicked Recommend (Like).

A reader from San Diego commented: “She lost more than her cool. She accused him of threatening her life. Your response screams entitled white privilege.”



I will leave it there. Anything else I might write here will subject me to angry and probably snide comments and accusations of being a racist.

But I recommend reading my prior post:

Thoughts Concerning “Repression of Discourse”

Thoughts Concerning “Repression of Discourse”


— posted by Roger W. Smith

   May 31, 2020

family separation repost VII


Trump digs in on false claim that he stopped Obama’s family separation policy – Washington Post 4-10-2019


The following is a new addition to my family separation posts (downloadable Word document above):

Trump digs in on false claim that he stopped Obama’s family separation policy

By Salvador Rizzo

The Washington Post

April 10, 2019


It’s a very important piece of news analysis which encapsulates what was wrong with the Trump administration’s family policy and how deviously it was implemented and defended — as we see here, by Trump himself. Such deviousness and dissembling were characteristic in varying degrees of architects and defenders of the policy such as Stephen Miller and Kirstjen Nielsen, and Attorney General Jeff Sessions.


— Roger W. Smith

   May 2020

more consolatory music



Mozart, Ave verum corpus (Hail, true body), K. 618, a motet in D major, composed in 1791.

Posted here as befitting the times; and in loving memory of my father, Alan Wright Smith, a church organist, who had a particular affection for this piece.


— posted by Roger W. Smith

   May 2020



Ave verum corpus, natum
de Maria Virgine,
vere passum, immolatum
in cruce pro homine
cuius latus perforatum
fluxit aqua et sanguine:
esto nobis praegustatum
in mortis examine.

Hail, true Body, born
of the Virgin Mary,
having truly suffered, sacrificed
on the cross for mankind,
from whose pierced side
water and blood flowed:
Be for us a foretaste [of the Heavenly banquet]
in the trial of death!

family separation repost VI (Family Separation: A Daily Diary)


Family Separation – A Daily Diary

In my post “Family Separation: A Daily Diary” (downloadable Word document above), I provide a day to day account — from March 3, 2017 to March 30, 2020 — of how the Trump administration’s family separation policy, which was at first implemented secretly, was implemented by the Department of Homeland Security, became public, caused outrage, was supposedly rescinded, and was still carried on by various administration stratagems; and of the horrors of trying to put Humpty Dumpty back together again, which is a way of saying: reunite children who were not accounted for or kept track of by the administration with their parents.

The document is 186 pages long.


— Roger W. Smith

    July 2020

I hope this music brings peace.



Anne Sofie Von Otter

“Like an Angel Passing Though My Room”




The sadness I often feel now — today and many other days — is palpable, physically.
For many reasons. Including the obvious ones, meaning what we are all going through.

Roger W. Smith

   May 2020

morning thoughts


The following is the text of an email from me this morning to my friend Clare Bruyère, an emeritus professor of American literature who lives in Paris. I feel that it is not too personal for me to post it.



Thank you very much for your comments, Claire.

I have gotten hardly any feedback or compliments on my family separation posts. …

NYC and Manhattan are depressing — not the same city.

I hate “social distancing” — though I am not in a position to say what must be done, and realize it is necessary, but, I feel that — as a few, very few, commentators have pointed out — people need closeness to people just as they do sunlight and oxygen.

Many commentators are extolling, and advising us upon, the glories of things such as virtual gatherings and parties; interacting remotely; working with colleagues and attending concerts and cultural events from home; and abolishing “old fashioned,” retrograde things such as the handshake.

These moribund social engineers and would be “reformers” have no conception of what makes us human, and what is required for maintaining a feeling of wellbeing.


posted by Roger W. Smith

   May 14, 2020

family separation repost V (individual stories of family separation under the Trump administration)


STORIES – family separation, etc


The downloadable Word document posted here (above) comprises a compilation by me of “horror stories” of immigrant children separated from their parents under the family separation policy that was implemented and carried out by the Trump administration from around July 2017 to January of this year as a means to deter immigration. The extent of this time frame takes into account that long after the policy was supposedly rescinded, in response to public pressure, many children remained separated from their parents, often because officials had never bothered to keep track of them.

The document posted here is 130 pages long.


— Roger W. Smith

   May 2020

1963 Mid-Winter Conference program, LRY (Liberal Religious Youth)


1963 Mid-Winter Conference program


Program attached. The conference was held at Goddard College in Plainfield, VT. It was sponsored by the New England Regional Committtee (NERC) of Liberal Religious Youth (LRY).

With thanks to Philip J. Pierce for sending me this rare piece of LRY memorabilia.


— posted by Roger W. Smith

   May 2020

family separation repost IV (editorials against the Trump administration’s family separation policy)


editorials – family separation


The downloadable Word document posted here (above) comprises a daily compilation by me of editorials and letters to the editor expressing opposition to the Trump administration’s family separation policy.

The document posted here is 148 pages long.

It is sad to contemplate how the issue (outrage) of family separation as a strategy to deter immigration seems to have faded from public consciousness in the past months, and has faded almost completely since the pandemic began. While this is understandable, it would seem, the children who suffered trauma and the parents unendurable emotional pain will not easily recover.

Many, in fact the majority, of the editorials which commenced in March 2017, are eloquent and have a Zola-esque quality.


— Roger W. Smith

   May 2020

flight from the cities


Please see my new post

“flight from the cities”

on my Sorokin site at

flight from the cities


— Roger W. Smith