13 Questions for a Green Hills Walker


In response to your anonymous “Ticked Off” letter of 3/24/16 to the Green Hills News:

Park Back

  1. What is the citizenship status of the “foreigners” you observed in the park?

  2. If they are not from the U.S., or are naturalized citizens, what nation do “these people” hail from?

  3.  What, specifically, is the diplomatic situation between the U.S. and “these people” and “their nation”?

  4. Were “these people” cursing in A.) English; or B.) another language?

  5. If “B,” how did you know they were cursing?

  6. What practice do you object to most, when it occurs outdoors on the grounds of “your” public park? A) smoking; B) grilling out; C) speaking in outdoor voices

  7. If “these people” were to congregate in the park without cooking, smoking, or speaking in outdoor voices, would you still object?

  8. Would you still object to this situation if the smoke were light instead of dark?

  9. Would you still object to this situation if the people’s skin were light instead of dark?

  10. Do you hold a property title to Edwin Warner Park?

  11. What is your understanding of the phrase, “public park”?

  12. Where would you suggest that “these people” congregate instead?

  13. When you are not trying not to be judgmental, what does that look like?

My One Question for the Green Hills “News”:

  1.  Seriously? You printed this?

24 thoughts on “13 Questions for a Green Hills Walker

  1. Wonderful questions!

    I have found that the parks in NJ are full of families of all colors, sizes and shapes and it makes me happy to see this diversity.

      • I see the families cooking out and have to fight back the urge to beg for a taste of the delicious food!

      • Hi. So one of those people that this person is referring is my relatives . What I don’t get is how this person knows every little detail. Yes we bbq lamb and chicken . What is wrong with that . And as to “foreigners” my family one by one are all citizens of the United States, and I’m sure a lot of the other ones are also, citizens . We sit on the ground because we don’t need to be all fancy and uncomfortable just to look good . We bring chairs and carpet looking blankets for those who want to sit and be comfortable. Sunday is the day they all get around and enjoy their time together . other than the cigarette smoking and “yelling” did they not see the laughing after yelling and enjoying their time together playing card games ? Did they not see how many happy kids that play around in the park together ? All that matters is them enjoying their only day they are off with their family and relatives . And no one should have any judgements on that . And by the way , they are one of the nicest people you will ever meet only if you come up to them . They respect anyone that passes by, whether it is a 2 year old or a 90 year old .

  2. Have you thought it was a fictional story somebody made up? Has anyone taken a look for themselves to see if the weekend feasts are imaginary or not?

    • I don’t know. A few FB people have claimed to see similar feasts, but I haven’t been to that park in a while and don’t know for sure. I guess the point is, though, that somebody saw fit to make an ugly, xenophobic comment in a political season that has felt quite ugly of late. Even if they made up the story, that ugliness still does damage.

    • We are now wrapping up the spring holidays. There was the spring equinox that (in addition to being celebrated by pagans, wiccan, etc.) signals new year’s celebrations for many countries. It is also celebrated by Baha’i. These celebrations occur over several weeks. This year the equinox fell about the same time as Purim (Jewish- Esther/ Hadassah), and a week before Christian Easter. Also, this is the same time of year as Holi (Hindu- festival of colors). So, there were undoubtedly a lot of celebrations going on!

  3. This column in the Green Hills News will print anything. Amazing, and the paper doesn’t ask for the name of the person making the comment for this column.

  4. One of those “foreigners” lives across the street from me. Why don’t you explain to him, and his family, why you don’t want him to use “our” park. And, while you’re talking to him let him tell you about how he spent three years as a interpreter for “our” American army in Iraq. Oh, and also let him show you the wounds from the six gunshots he took for “our” American servicemen. Then, let him tell you how “they” tried to capture his children and burn them. Or you can ask the children themselves. You’ll find them on their bikes, or flying the kite they took to the park, or just “yelling” at each other. Oh, and by the way, listen while they explain how grateful they are to be living in “the home of the brave.” (That is a direct quote from this foreigner.) Shame on you!

      • This made me hopping mad! Just could not let it pass! And, to those who wonder, yes, these weekend feasts exist. Its a lovely gathering, and the food smells awesome!

    • Thank you, Peggy. Heartening to know those chicken-grilling, cigarette-smoking, yelling, hooting, fun-lovin’ American families were originally from Irag and not from… Redneck America . Which is what I thought for just a minute. Until I remembered that these chicken-grilling, cigarette-smoking, yelling, hooting, fun-lovin’ American families were also not vulgar, blasphemous and drunk. Because American-Muslim don’t dig that.

    • Too bad I live in Vancouver, Canada, or I’d be in the park this weekend- ROASTED LAMB!!!! Does anything smell or taste any better. Maybe I’d bring them some American or Canadian food to share ‘potlatch’ style like the ‘foreign’ native indians here used to do back in the old days before we civilized them. Some good old Canadian pizza, chinese takeout, or maybe I better bring something I know is American- KFC!!! Buddy, spend some time getting to know your new neighbours and they just might open up your world. Otherwise, find another park and let the rest of us enjoy our lives.

  5. What an ugly, heartbreaking anonymous letter and what telling responses from the blogger and Peggy. I’m verklempt all the way around.

  6. I was just there last weekend and didn’t see anyone matching this description. And even if I did, the park is huge! Walk a different way!

  7. I remember a time when I and my friends used to spend time at the Warner Parks and Centennial Park. We had long hair and played Frisbee and loud music. Certain people complained about us, too. Some of us were from families that lived in Green Hills or Belle Meade. Some of us were from less well-to-do neighborhoods. Some people just aren’t happy unless they have something to complain about. Some people would have no self-worth if they didn’t have someone they could turn their noses up at.

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