An Open Letter to Dr Ben Carson

Dr. Carson, I admire what you have accomplished in your career, I really do. You are, in many respects, an example for any person, young or old. But I believe your political ambitions have caused you to say something that is, at best, ignorant, and at worse, racist.

I’m referring to this podcast interview.

What you said in that interview demonstrated that ignorant, naïve statements are not the exclusive domain of persons of certain races, colors, or creed. Not Republicans, or Democrats. It’s not imbued in any particular socioeconomic background. It’s an individual problem. It’s one person making the choice to use race to take down someone else.

I am both disappointed and ashamed. Disappointed, because you were one of the last persons I felt would stoop so low as to disparage another person’s upbringing for your own gain. And ashamed because, as an African American man, the son of an veteran Army officer, and the father of 4 biracial children, to have another African American man imply that I cannot relate to my own heritage is so biting, so hypocritical it is beyond comprehension how you could say such a thing.

You will not be our next President. Of that, there is no doubt in my mind nor that of the majority of likely voters. But you had the opportunity to rise above the fray, to show that decency and respect were not chips you would bargain with. Now, you’re just another politician. And less of a role model for the very people who you alone were best positioned to represent.