(Writer’s note: I had a friend help me with this letter. But every sentiment is mine. I hope they are yours, too.)

I stand accused of racism for a comment that was not racist. I question the motives of the accusers, but since I don’t know what is in their hearts, I’ll put that aside. At a New Gloucester Select Board meeting on Dec. 3, 2020, after the Pledge of Allegiance, I said, “Liberty and justice for all, for everyone. Even us white folks!”

George Colby is a member of the New Gloucester Board of Selectmen.

Folks, the direction that our beautiful country has been going in is tragic. Many people don’t even like reciting the Pledge of Allegiance anymore. America is being accused of racism, like it was in the New York Times “1619 Project,” which stated that the Revolutionary War was conducted to preserve slavery. Liberal historians debunked that as nonsense.

I believe in the vision of America: “E Pluribus Unum – Out of Many, One.” We’re Americans, not white Americans or black Americans or Hispanic or Asian Americans, or any other flavor. I believe in the Godly vision of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. when he stated: “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.”

I am confident that as a man of God, Dr. King didn’t mean: “But those white folks: we have to judge them by the color of their skin.” No! He was a brave and righteous man who knew that God loves every person without any regard at all for the color of their skin. It always comes down to character and one’s mind and heart – that’s what makes a person good or not.

But America is different in 2021. America, if you hadn’t noticed, is under severe attack. Fear and condemnation are trying to infect our beautiful country with what is now called the “cancel culture.” You’ve all seen it. Comedians are being canceled because of a joke they told 10 years prior. A taco stand was canceled for “cultural appropriation” because the two ladies who owned it were white and had gotten their recipes from other ladies in Mexico. Anybody with a lick of sense would know that the white owners were demonstrating cultural appreciation. They loved the food!

Some of you know me. Many do not. But the people attacking me have gotten enough signatures to do a recall vote for a comment that was not racist. Since it wasn’t racist, I’m not going to apologize for saying it. I exercised my freedom of speech and expressed my dismay at the state of America, my frustration that people are trying to tear down America. That dismay was falsely condemned as racist by Laura Fralich in her op-ed in the Sun Journal, “White grievance is racism: Why New Gloucester Selectman George Colby needs to be recalled.”

OK, it might have been out of place at a Select Board meeting, but that’s a minor issue. Really. Get some perspective.

So, I first thought, when I heard about the recall effort: “You’ve got to be kidding!”

Then I realized that she and others were serious. They want to “cancel” me. Why? Just because of that one comment, said half-jokingly? I don’t think so. I think their agenda is far more malicious. It’s not just me they’re attacking, folks.

They’re also attacking you and a free America. America used to be “the land of the free and the home of the brave.” Where are our freedoms now? Think about it: “George Colby made a remark. Cancel him! Recall him!”

And then think about “the brave.” Where are the brave in today’s cancel culture? Nowhere to be seen?

They’re coming for me today, but they may come for you tomorrow. Does that matter? I think it does. It’s time to be brave and strong and righteous and declare loudly and frequently that America was created by the Founding Fathers for all races, to live together as members of the “human race.” The Left hates that phrase because they like to divide us. But we cannot be divided. Don’t let them divide us! Yes, America has had its problems and still does. But, my goodness, we’ve made a lot of progress and become a better place! Just remember – if you think America is “evil,” ask yourself: “Compared to what? Compared to where? A utopia that doesn’t yet exist?” If you use that standard, then everyone in the world is condemned, which makes no sense at all.

It’s time to be brave and stop the “cancel culture.” Can you stand up for freedom? I hope you will, and I hope you’ll speak out: not just in my defense, but in defense of a free America.

I thank you, sincerely, for being brave.

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