Letter: Find and ban those who can't behave
To the editor:
Thursday morning I read with interest Pamela Tatge's oped commentary on racism at Jacob's Pillow. Within the body of her text she writes the following: "And it's because I care so much for our audience, that I'm asking all of us to think collectively about what we should do to address bias and racism within our midst."
I believe I have at least one answer and it comes from The Eagle's executive editor, Kevin Moran. A few weeks ago, I attended a talk at Hevreh in Great Barrington presented by Mr. Moran and Fred Rutberg, the president and publisher of The Eagle. The main reason I joined the discussion was to gain an understanding of the Letters to the Editor section of the paper. My position at the time was whether or not The Eagle should be able to discern between letters written in "anger" and letters written with "hate." The difference is subtle but in my mind critical.
This brings me to my point; there wasn't a simple answer and the discussion was lively. I was personally satisfied when Mr. Moran made a statement along these lines and I'm not quoting; don't you want to know the people that are writing these letters? I did and I do. I want to know these people and I want to have an opportunity to discuss their thoughts and actions in an educated and informed fashion because as Ms. Tatge points out, silence is not an option.
I would encourage Ms. Tatge to publicly expose these individuals; identify them. Having attended the Jacob's Pillow gala myself and knowing that there were assigned seating arrangements both inside and outside the theater, locating these people would be easy. Short of outing them publicly, they should be identified privately and told that their behavior was unacceptable.
Personally, I believe the governing bodies of international football have finally gotten it right. When racist behavior in the stands is identified and can be connected to an individual or group, the teams have collectively begun banning these individuals from their seats, even if they have been in the family for the same 87 years that Jacob's Pillow has been a beacon of inclusion in Berkshire County.
David S. Rosenthal,
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