I have been receiving ONP magazine for years and enjoy it to the fullest. One of the main reasons I find this little jewel so delightful is the fact that it is not biased. You print the story as it was originally written, good or bad. For example, in last months issue, you printed a story written before the civil war about slavery in the south. This story told us that there were many sides to slavery in America and that the slaves could be shrewd in figuring out how to get the things they wanted by working around their predicament. I don’t think you would find a story like that any where else.
Thank you, Happy Easter and keep up the good work…………
Kathryn Moreau Taylor
Dear Kim and Terry,
I have been a subscriber to ONP since my return to this area and have truly enjoyed almost every single subject and article you guys have printed. The magazine is informative, entertaining, funny, educational and enlightening on the cultures of the area. I was both shocked and angered by your coverage of the New York Daily News’ perspective on slavery in 1852.. I certainly understand that you are simply reprinting the story as it was written, however it seems to me to be an inopportune time in history to choose this particular article with its’ denigrating and insulting opinions about slaves who were overwhelmingly African American. The characterization of our people as lazy drunkards with nothing but leisure time on their hands and pockets full of money to blow in town is so totally absurd it makes me sick.I could go on listing the absurdities in this article,but it would serve no real purpose.
My concern is why this particular article deserved front page status at this time. I hope I am wrong in feeling that there is a subliminal message buried in the subject that someone wished to promote. How do you suppose those of us whose fore parents endured the cruel indignities of slavery and its’ sub institutions feel reading this article which portrays the institution as a joke? Am I overly sensitive about this? Yes I am. We know how the election of an African American (who is really multi-racial like most of the folks in Louisiana) president has affected a large segment of our country, so it seems that every opportunity that allows them to raise negative images of African Americans is taken by some Media organizations.
I am sure there are historians and scholars researching slavery who might come across this article and take it seriously, however most insightful and serious ones would understand the insults and misconceptions contained here. Most importantly those who are knowledgeable and understands the effect of the demoralization of one human being by another will be as upset and saddened as I am.
Shirley A. Small-Rougeau
Thank you for your enjoyment of Old Natchitoches Parish Magazine and willingness to share your concerns about this article. As you pointed out, this is one perspective, and we have always presented historical text as written to give our readers the opportunity to learn. History is not without bias. I accept that. However, history has also taught me that if I allow myself I am always learning and that I do not always agree with the author. Openness, and education…access to new information helps us assimilate the information we learn and develop our own perceptions and sometimes challenge our biases. From this article I again became more aware of how and why some of our forefathers developed their perceptions and why race relations developed and/or deteriorated the way they did on a broad scale, but remained very personal on an individual basis.
There was no hidden agenda. The actual point of running this article was that the New York Times of all media presented this ironic mostly absurd view. I am sure since this author was in a city that he did see an example of this behavior. We can always find and exaggerate situations to fit our ends. However we know there are many more examples of how slaves adapted and became skilled craftsmen, labors, caregivers, farmers, (and eventually a descendent became President of the United States). The same can be said for slaves owners. There are good and bad examples. It just depends on what you go looking for…if any of us goes back far enough on the family tree we will find ancestors who were slaves and royalty.
I am very hopeful and supportive of our new president.
Thank you again for sharing your concerns.
Have A Great Day
Enclosed is a subscription for 2 years. A gift for my husband, who does a lot for me and sometimes I do not always remember to thank him. Wow, what a way to say “Thank You.” He so enjoys reading ONP (hey, so do I.)
Thanks for a great gift to all who read it.
Blessing Kaye Shiver