Sunday, May 29, 2011

The Unforgiven: Hopes for Forgiveness and Healing

Posted by Cliff Harrison

I feel I am well enough to make a series of statements in my blogs on the network in regards to the local race for mayor of the City of Las Vegas. I have missed many opportunities to discuss the events as they unfolded and failed to participate in active discussion due to my sickness as many of you are aware of. However, I believe I can complete these articles, commentaries or statements so that those who follow my various blogs through subscription notices or otherwise can be aware of the most recent development concerning homelessness--my communication with Commissioner Chris Giunchigliani.

(Chris Giunchigliani: june-kil-e-ah-nee )

The next post will show Commissioner Giunchigliani’s communication with me and why I now support her for mayor in the June 2011 Las Vegas election.

My previous words have not been kind about Clark County Commissioner Chris Giunchigliani. We are at the extreme opposite ends of political convictions. I have been extremely outspoken in the past against Chris Giunchigliani for her work as a local politician, as a county commissioner, a board member of RTC, UMC, and several other issues concerning the community especially homelessness.

With the mindset of a manager, of which I’ve spent my life, I’m a chain of command type of guy. As a manager I’ve always held the conviction that whatever occurred below me was directly my business and responsibility. It was my fault rather the end result was good or bad. Whatever occurred above me was also my responsibility as in the duties of the powers of persuasion. It was my job to persuade my boss to adapt a certain level of administrative attitude or style in our management policy and practice.

Therefore, I always hold those at the top responsible for whatever happens below them. Lack of knowledge is not an excuse because it is their duty to know what is going on in their area of management. With that in mind, one ought to see clearly why I blame those in charge when something goes wrong--or praise the leaders when something goes right.

I’ve tried to forgive those in political power in the Las Vegas community for their unrighteousness against the community's homeless and poor. I have weaken in my own duties to God and try as I may, forgiveness is something I continue to struggle with. Forgiving them would be like asking the devil to burn a cross on my forehead. It’s the right sign but the wrong hand writing the signature.

I was severely hurt while homeless in Las Vegas and so were an awful lot of other people. I was abused. I was treated illegally and inhumanely by the local officials and my absolute rights were refused or taken away and those scars will never go away.

One formerly homeless individual who was my associate while I was homeless, and continues to be my friend today, Shay Elliot, in speaking about my decision on rather or not to sue the City of Las Vegas and the County of Clark (as well as individual politicians responsible and neglectful), said “Forgive them after you sue them.” As humorous as it sounds, it is a choice option. I am under no pressure to sue as I have plenty of time before the statue of limitation runs out and under legal authority, allowed by special circumstances, I could receive extensions on that statue of limitations. I’m not going to elaborate here. I’d rather forgive and see real change than to litigate something which is an evil caused by a handful of people.

The best solution is to change those at the top, the managers. In this case, Goodman. Then perhaps I can begin forgiving. But never, ever forgetting.

It’s hard to like bees while you are still being stung.

I would not publish something that was communicated and taken in private--that did not concern a public issue--without permission from the one I communicated with. Commissioner Giunchigliani has agreed to have this correspondence published on the network. I do so because I want others, those who have not yet voted, or who are still undecided who to vote for as the next mayor of Las Vegas to read her statement. I also do so for the many concerned people out there, particularly the Christians who work with the homeless to know Commissioner Giunchigliani’s position--her attitude.

I was impressed with Commissioner Giunchigliani response to my inquiry. I not only share that statement, but under the consideration I hereby endorse Chris Giunchigliani for mayor of Las Vegas and ask that you vote for her as well as suggest to your friends to do the same.

Any of us who are homeless, have been homeless or helped the homeless during Oscar Goodman’s administration personally know the atrocities that Goodman and his thugs have welded upon the innocent and often defenseless homeless citizens of this community.

Chris Giunchigliani offers a change, a real change to those evil acts Goodman’s reign has inflicted upon the ten’s of thousands of homeless people in his twelve-year dictatorship.

Although our political differences couldn’t be farther apart, in regards to the humanitarian issues involving the homeless and poor, Chris Giunchigliani and I seem to tightly bond with the same attitude. Sometimes one must make a sacrifice--give up something to gain something--and this is one of those times.

No matter what political, social, economical or religious issue you discuss, nothing, but nothing is more important than how a community treats its people once they have lost everything they ever owned. When you have nothing you have nothing to lose and when you have nothing to lose the powers that be in your community decides your destiny, your fate. The humanitarianism decides rather you live or die, sometimes literally if not symbolically.

I’m eager, as Commissioner Giunchigliani mentions in her statement to me, “win or lose” (her mayor race), of opening a line of communication and discussion to help solve problems of the homelessness in our community as well as issues concerning UMC and other community problems.

I’d much rather contribute to bring about change in a constructive way in this manner of communication than by the use of the courtrooms. I’d much rather compromise and forgive than carry the Ax of Hostility into yet another battle. Besides, doing so would be the Christian way. But before I put the ax down a brutal, relentless dictator--Oscar Goodman--must go. And that means his wife can not be mayor for we all know that Oscar would continue to be actively involved in Las Vegas politics and we can not allow that to happen.

We have a choice between two people, Goodman and Giunchigliani. We know without a shadow of a doubt where Goodman will lead us--not down the road we want to travel. Giunchigliani’s correspondence gives us a sincere hope for real change for the homeless and poor citizens of this community. A change for the better. A change for a breath of fresh air without the pungency of Oscar Goodman’s hostility.

So, join me in supporting Chris Giunchigliani as the next mayor of Las Vegas. Read her statement Chris Giunchigliani Speaks About Homelessness in Las Vegas in the next post. It is a door that I knocked on. It is a door that has opened.

I wish I was in better health and could keep my blogs more up-to-date, but until then help make real change in the lives of the poor homeless souls in the Las Vegas Valley.

Posted by Cliff Harrison

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