Justice for whom?

Filed under COMMENTARIES

MINDY L. MAYES, MPH
GUEST COLUMNIST

I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation, under God, indivisible with liberty and justice for all. The Pledge of Allegiance, something we learn early on, recite every day in our schools, and before our meetings, yet, do we truly mean and understand that which we are saying?

In our nation, over not just the past few months, but years, hundreds of years, we have been living a major untruth, because there is not liberty, and there is not certainly justice for all. Looking at data from the 2012 census, overall, woman earn 77 cents on the dollar of men, with this statistic worsening when looking at minorities, African-American women earn 69 cents for every dollar paid to African-American men, and Latinas earn just 58 cents on the dollar compared to Latino men.

No justice for all
According to Freedomtomarry.org, currently, there is pending litigation in 15 states and 1 US territory, on if individuals who love people of the same sex should be able to get married. I could go on to talk about the debate on higher pay for minimum wage jobs, many jobs that people who are in poverty will hold, or the treatment and number of undocumented children currently being held in migrant camps, and the disproportionate number of minorities in US jails and prisons. These are just a few of the justice issues that come to mind. All are injustices, not “liberty and justice for all.”

We all know the injustices done to Trayvon Martin, Tamir Rice, Michael Brown, Eric Garner and Marissa Alexander. There is also Ezzell Ford, Dante Parker, Yvette Smith. These are the names we do know and there are many more.

Justice celebrations
As we celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Selma march, the 52nd anniversary of the March on Washington, and the fact that some of us feel we have made it because we have our first African-American President, Barack Hussein Obama, let us truly reflect on what we mean when we so easily recite “and liberty and justice for all.” There are many issues of justice, and we must not pick and choose to help just ourselves, or our groups, but to move towards a change of “liberty and justice for all.”

Until we have equal pay, equal rights, and don’t have to chant Black lives matter, because not just Black lives, but all lives, Hispanic, Caucasian, Jewish, Indian, Asian, all lives matter.  We must continue to work, we must continue to fight, and we must continue to lift our voices. I think of a song by Sam Cook that says, “It’s been a long, a long time coming, but I know a change gon’ come, oh yes it is.” We must continue to strive towards liberty and justice for all, until that day, that day that is a long time coming, and change comes. I believe it’s possible, oh yes I do, and I hope that you hope this to.

Mindy L. Mayes works secularly as an extension educator, and sacredly as a pastor. Based in Indiana, she believes in reaching all people, especially those in the margins. Reach her at I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation, under God, indivisible with liberty and justice for all. The Pledge of Allegiance, something we learn early on, recite every day in our schools, and before our meetings, yet, do we truly mean and understand that which we are saying?

In our nation, over not just the past few months, but years, hundreds of years, we have been living a major untruth, because there is not liberty, and there is not certainly justice for all. Looking at data from the 2012 census, overall, woman earn 77 cents on the dollar of men, with this statistic worsening when looking at minorities, African-American women earn 69 cents for every dollar paid to African-American men, and Latinas earn just 58 cents on the dollar compared to Latino men.

No justice for all
According to Freedomtomarry.org, currently, there is pending litigation in 15 states and 1 US territory, on if individuals who love people of the same sex should be able to get married. I could go on to talk about the debate on higher pay for minimum wage jobs, many jobs that people who are in poverty will hold, or the treatment and number of undocumented children currently being held in migrant camps, and the disproportionate number of minorities in US jails and prisons. These are just a few of the justice issues that come to mind. All are injustices, not “liberty and justice for all.”

We all know the injustices done to Trayvon Martin, Tamir Rice, Michael Brown, Eric Garner and Marissa Alexander. There is also Ezzell Ford, Dante Parker, Yvette Smith. These are the names we do know and there are many more.

Justice celebrations
As we celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Selma march, the 52nd anniversary of the March on Washington, and the fact that some of us feel we have made it because we have our first African-American President, Barack Hussein Obama, let us truly reflect on what we mean when we so easily recite “and liberty and justice for all.” There are many issues of justice, and we must not pick and choose to help just ourselves, or our groups, but to move towards a change of “liberty and justice for all.”

Until we have equal pay, equal rights, and don’t have to chant Black lives matter, because not just Black lives, but all lives, Hispanic, Caucasian, Jewish, Indian, Asian, all lives matter.  We must continue to work, we must continue to fight, and we must continue to lift our voices. I think of a song by Sam Cook that says, “It’s been a long, a long time coming, but I know a change gon’ come, oh yes it is.” We must continue to strive towards liberty and justice for all, until that day, that day that is a long time coming, and change comes. I believe it’s possible, oh yes I do, and I hope that you hope this to.

Mindy L. Mayes works secularly as an extension educator, and sacredly as a pastor. Based in Indiana, she believes in reaching all people, especially those in the margins. Reach her at mindy142mayes@gmail.com.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *