Posts Tagged ‘diversity’

E Pluribus Unum, One Columbus, the Constitution, and You

November 17, 2008

   One Columbus, the organization of Columbus leaders dedicated to bringing people of all races and creeds together in our area, thinks all of us need to understand the United States Constitution. Rabbi Max Roth, a One Columbus leader, says that the U.S. Constitution is the document that unites the whole country. That’s why One Columbus and Columbus State University are sponsoring  E Pluribus Unum. That’s the title of a series of lectures and discussions about the Constitution. E pluribus unum means “one out of many.” It’s on the Great Seal of the United States and some state coins.

Great Seal of the United States

Great Seal of the United States

  I’ve been to a couple of these programs and they are interesting. I would suggest, though, that you read the Constitution before going. I read it a few years ago and it has some things in it that I didn’t know about. It’s sort of like reading the Bible cover to cover yourself. In both cases you are getting the information unfiltered through someone else’s interpretation. However, both documents are open to interpretation and both are interpreted a lot. I won’t get into the Bible, but I will say that the only interpretation of the Constitution that matters is the one done by the U.S. Supreme Court.  (See Roe vs. Wade, or Brown vs. the Board of Education for a couple of reasons why) 

Dr. Tom Dolan, CSU Department of Political Science

  Last week, Dr.  Tom Dolan, CSU Political Science Department professor,  conducted a lecture and discussion on the history of the Constitution. It was quite interesting, but very few folks were there. It got very little publicity. But, those who were there learned that the Constitution was created by wealthy property owners for wealthy property owners, and that it doesn’t claim that all men are equal, among other things.  It changed, of course, as it was amended over the years. I won’t go into all of that, but I will say that Dr. Dolin brought out some things about the Constitution that would probably surprise you.  

  Anyway, E pluribus unam’s next session is Tuesday night at 7:00 at Columbus State University’s Commerce and Technology building, room 237. Dr. Troy Vidal of the CSU Political Science Department will talk about Federalism. (See John Adams vs. Thomas Jefferson, or Abraham Lincoln vs. Jefferson Davis)  If you haven’t read the Constitution and want to, you can pick up a free copy at the lecture. Rabbi Roth happily hands them out at the door.

Rabbi Max Roth, Shearith Israel Synagogue, One Columbus

Rabbi Max Roth, Shearith Israel Synagogue, One Columbus

 

“Federalism” – Tuesday night, November 18, 2008, at 7:00 at Columbus State University’s Commerce and Technology building, room 237.

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Few Showed up for a Big International Show

September 22, 2008

  In this world of racial and ethnic strife, one has to support efforts to lessen and even prevent that strife by bringing people of different races and cultures together. That’s why I support One Columbus and that’s why I went down to the Columbus Civic Center to attend the International Festival, which is sponsored by the Mayor’s Commission and Unity and Diversity.

 A lot of different cultures and countries were represented with booths and entertainment groups.

  When I walked in a Japanese contingent was performing a dance. They were giving it their all and I enjoyed it.

Japanese Dancers, Columbus Civic Center

Japanese Dancers, Columbus Civic Center

Japanese Dancers, Columbus Civic Center

Japanese Dancers, Columbus Civic Center

   Afterwards I went over to the Japanese booth and chatted with Kazue Schmitz, who is married to Kurt Schmitz, WTVM weatherman.  She was writing people’s names in Japanese for them to take home as a souvenir.  She was pleased with the idea of diverse people gathering for a festival, but she was disappointed with size of the crowd. She and Mirta Fortin, originally from Guatemala, and now a teacher of Spanish at Columbus High School, who was hosting the Guatemala booth, who agreed with her, said there was just no advance publicity.

Kazue Schmitz, Columbus Civic Center

Kazue Schmitz, Columbus Civic Center

Mita Fortin, Columbus Civic Center

Mita Fortin, Columbus Civic Center

  You can’t expect people to come if they don’t know about it. The person in charge of sending out news releases said she sent them to the newspaper, radio and TV stations, but for some reason they didn’t seem interested. She said some showed to take some pictures at the event. That’s nice, but they could have gotten better crowd shots if they had let people know about it in advance.

Korean Fan Dancers, Columbus Civic Center

Korean Fan Dancers, Columbus Civic Center

    You hate to see people put out a big effort to share their cultural backgrounds with dances and displays and have to play to a lot of empty seats.

   I wouldn’t known about it if One Columbus Executive Director Ken Crooks hadn’t told about it during a speech he made Sunday morning at the Unitarian Fellowship of Columbus. He talked about diversity and unity combining in a community. More on that in a future post. Stay tuned.