It’s difficult to find a starting point. There’s so much going on in my head, and outside of it these days. A common theme though has been about ‘race’…
There’s a misconception regarding the black/white divide in this country.
There’s a public relations skewing happening with the story…
It’s social, political, and, well, conversational suicide to even begin to allude to an ‘understanding’ of the issues…
Especially if you are of the lighter-skinned persuasion.
This Expectation. Utterly. Pisses. Me. Off.
The expectation ushers me back to high school years.
When I had decided to read Malcom X’s book.
I wanted to know what he experienced. I wanted to understand his perspective. I wanted to know why he was so angry…
Ironically, I learned far more from my fellow students’ responses to the presence of his book on top of my school books than anything he ever said…
The white kids would tap the book with the flat of their hand, “Why the hell would you read that crap?”
The black kids would tap the book with the flat of their hand, “You don’t have the right to read that!”
Hearkening back to the fifteen year old in my brain…
I hear only one sentiment: “F* You, it’s a free country… I have a library card – the only right I need. You don’t tell me what I can – or can’t read.”
What the freaking hell?
In an interview in the past week… It’s been alluded to how white people always tread into those dreaded racial waters… and while I completely understand it DOES happen… I also know, intimately, that the guillotine blade of the racial divide – SWINGS BOTH WAYS.
I have a good friend. Of the darker skinned persuasion. Who. God love them… I have YET to make it through an evening without mentioning race.
I have a vivid memory of the last semi-formal dinner I hosted. I was pouring the wine, finishing the food prep… and I told my husband… “Tonight, I WILL NOT MENTION RACE.”
My husband later explained, because I was bemoaning the direction of a small portion of the discussion… and feeling terrible… “You know honey, SHE brought it up… not you.”
This is the reality I SEE:
There are powers-that-be in this country who would LOVE to let us to continue to believe that RACE is why all these BAD things are happening…
It’s all about class.
(Or lack thereof)
So, when shows like TDS (The Daily Show) turn to the camera and preach about gun ownership and race… it only angers me more.
Not at the NRA, or the police…
But at the news agencies, at the people being interviewed on the street – the talking heads on the news shows.
We can’t seem to STOP talking about RACE.
Here’s an UNCOMFORTABLE truth…
My family members, male… White… supposedly privileged?
4 out of 5 of them…
Have had regular run-ins with law enforcement.
They’ve been pulled over, called “boy” on numerous occasions…
Even my white, middle class husband, in his redneck car in the 1990’s was pulled over by Tennessee State police and told in a menacing, confrontational manner:
“Boy. Do you know how fast you were going?”
What saved him?
His Momma’s insistence on respect and manners.