Portland observer. (Portland, Or.) 1970-current, July 01, 1987, Image 1

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    “ - r v ... s Sshoen-r.'ewspaper Poco
1 v c i a î t y o f Oregon L ib r a r y
• e , Or
Volume XVII, Number 34
July 1, 1987
P ubiukm g (
Beverly Gates:
A Woman of Distinction
by Larry Baker
When the subject is racism, Beverly Gates no longer remains the shy,
charming and graceful lady normally found in the back of the room of a
campus classroom or a bench in City Hall. Suddenly, Beverly Gates be­
comes a woman who knows the subject well and is willing to deal with it
on any level.
Gates, a socialite in the 60's and a peace-maker and model in the 70's, is
now a very sophisticated, intelligent Black therapist in the 80's. There is no
room for fear in a workshop she designed and titled “ Strategies for
Change” .
“ My father and grandpa prepared me years ago for the message I will
send to you this date,” states Gates, as she prepares any large group of
individuals who have come to hear her lecture. Addressing white males in
the audience, it would not be uncommon to hear this striking female say,
"Deal with my mind and not with my body, then you can learn something
of great value about the Black woman and the suffering she has endured
in order to survive."
Gates' motto has always been, "I don't care if you like me or enjoy me,
but you will respect me.”
Beverly Gates' grandfather's name was Asa Davis Gates, a very heavy
Christian Baptist Bible-thumper in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, who was
also a coachman for the railroad. He also had a special knowledge of ani­
mals, which was noticed by many around him. Gates speculates that her
grandfather's talents were attributable to the Indian blood that he may or
may not have had. Beverly contends that her grandfather's professional
know-how of some animals enabled him to develop a somewhat successful
treatment for an illness in horses. The illness, called “ epizootic", would
force a horse to cough for long periods until its throat would swell up,
blocking the air into the lungs, and in most instances, causing death.
"This sickness would go through a stall very fast," says Beverly, “ be­
cause it was an air-borne sickness." Beverly states that her grandfather
developed a medication which he would have the animals breath, thereby
keeping the air passage open. When word got around of Asa Gates' cure,
he became somewhat famous, and eventually he was asked to treat the
horses of one of the owners of a railroad. "The owner was so greatful, that
he gave Asa a life-time job on his railroad.
From those years to this date, the hunger for education, intelligence and
survival in the upper-class style of living became no stranger to the Gates
"B ut what did my grandfather do?" proudly says Beverly. "He was not
content just being a coachman. My grandfather went on to become a
union man."
"I don't know if you know the history of the Black Coachman Union,
but in 1929, they were the only union that went on to march on Washing­
ton, D.C., in order to get the wages they deserved."
Beverly's grandfather died at the age of 93. Her parents, Joseph and
Laura Gates, moved to San Francisco, California, from Washington, D.C.,
where her father went to work for the U.S.O. at Camp Beal near Sacra­
Beverly graduated with honors from an all-white school in Hillsdale, Cali­
fornia, and continued her education at Fisk University in Nashville, Tennes­
It was at Fisk that Beverly met and married a white English professor from
the University of Oregon named William Cadbury. Cadbury was at Fisk on
a two-year Rockefeller Grant. He is also an heir to the Cadbury Chocolate
"S o that's how I got to Oregon," says Beverly. "Even though the mar­
riage did not last, my daughter and I remained."
"I always had this burning desire to train dogs, and that's what I do to­
day." Beverly continued, "I do it as a profession and it has been reward­
ing." She has won national awards in her dog training profession and is
also a model.
A few years ago, Beverly Gates started designing her own workshop on
"racism ". "It's a workshop that white people can clearly understand,"
says Beverly. "Being a Black woman who has experienced racism through­
out childhood, marriage and to this day, I feel I have a Ph.D. in racism.
She says her family background has given her the techniques to deal
with this subject. "Black people have always had the knowledge through
experience to deal with such sickness, but this is 1987 and one must be
articulate to relay the message." Gates states, "In conducting these semi­
nars, I want to create a trauma-free society."
Beverly applauds the efforts of Black men who have set their path toward
economics, but it is now time for the Black woman to come out of the kit­
chen and assist in whatever way possible.
Gates' latest workshop at the University of Oregon won her state-wide
acclaim as a therapist. "She is very beautiful, smooth, understanding and
articulate," says Jim Hall, student at U of 0 . "S hw makes me understand
the journey many Blacks have traveled and still travel today in Eugene, Ore­
A private source is now preparing Beverly Gates to go on a nation-wide
tour with her workshop. "It is something America needs to hear," says
that source. "It is something America needs to respect."
"I do not care if you don't like me, just as long as your respect me, as a
Black woman" here in Eugene, Oregon—a city smattered with racism.
Not Charity But Justice
by Pat R. Cuda
The late Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. was a rare man among men. His
heart was a garden where thought flowers grew. He had dreams and he
espoused those dreams. His purport in life was Mankind. And today Man­
kind is richer because of Him!
Dr. King, as a battler for Peace and for Freedom of Mankind, said that
in the event of his death he wanted all to say "He died to make men Free.
His goal was to establish a reign of Freedom and a Rule of Justice.
Dr. King loved life, but his yardstick was "It's not important how long
you live but how well you live."
Dr. King loved prominence, but his yardstick was "Preserving my posi­
tion is of no importance, challenging injustices is very important."
Dr. King died to make men Free —not by Charity but by Justice.
Dr. King passed through many experiences of suffering and bloodshed
that he knew what "H ell" was like, and his thought on that went like this:
"I have no sense of fear of a material Hell; the only Hell I am afraid of is that
somewhere, sometime in life the € o d of History will look me in the face and
say to me, 'Martin Luther King you had your chance; what have you done
with it?"'
Dr. King was the Champion of the Underdog, the Watchdog of Con­
gress, and his heart and soul were joined in preaching "Justice and Equality
for all Men."
Dr. King made hundreds of speeches and pleas to rid the United States of
Ameria of injustices. Here following is a recap of some of his thoughts and
expressions as were captured by this writer:
• Civilization is something that is constantly at stake. It demands a daily
plebiscite. We have got to think for it, live for it, fight for it and die for it,
or else there is no continuing civilization.
• Some of our people have said that we are fighting for the four basic
Freedoms—Speech Worship, Want and Fear. I think we might say we are
fighting for a thousand Freedoms.
• For whatever Freedom symbolizes to you and me today, that thing is
at stake in America and the World at this very moment.
• We have been fighting for Freedom for over 100 years, but we have
come to realize that in the broadest sense there can be no Freedom for any
people until there is Freedom for all people.
• We are living so close to our neighbors and to our enemies that we
have got to find out how to live together. And if any group of people de­
cide to become superior and try to dominate any other group of people,
then Humanity en masse has got to arise in all its dignity, integrity, honor
and manhood, and fight for the further extension of Freedom until it in­
cludes Mankind everywhere.
• We are carrying the fight for Freedom into the very heart of every
American city, and we are going to battle the opposition until it comes to
the realization that if it is going to live in this Nation it has got to live accor­
ding to the laws of decency and justice and righteousness and truth.
• Our fight is not an easy one, but fight it is, and we will all measure up to
it. This takes courage. Courage is that something that robs a man of a
sense of fear. Not by one iota does it change the danger, but it makes a
man willing to risk everything he has in order to complete the fight for Jus­
tice and Equality.
• We believe in our common cause because it is just —not just for our­
selves, not nationalism — but a cause that is just because it is inclusive of
a love that casts out fear and
sends us, as fearless people, unafraid of whatever things life can stack in
front of us, to risk and to give everything that we have that Mankind might
be Free.
• The conflict in America is a fight for Humanity, not for special interests
or special groups. We are fighting to make Mankind FREE, so that when
this thing is over we will stand FREE, FREE people, with Freedom of
thought and speech and economic opportunity. Therefore, our cry is "N ot
Charity but Justice."
I did not know Dr. King personally, but I believe in his final moments on
April 4, 1968, that HE quoted Cal. 3:13, to wit: "Continue putting up with
one another and forgiving one another freely if anyone has a cause for com­
plaint against another.”