8 responses

  1. Just saw this post. It makes me sad to hear what is really going on in the black community told on such a personal level. What can we do to change the evil that has been in so many hearts for generations in this country?

    • I don’t know, Mom, but I think it needs to happen within the white community, with all of us understanding the role we play in allowing this kind of thing to take place. We need to take it on as our fight, too, because that’s exactly what it is, and we’re never going to be free of the shame we feel around our privilege and our history until we get after it in some meaningful way.

  2. Understanding and challenging our own assumptions is a start. A million years ago I read that people should watch a tv show or listen to music outside our own ethnicity. Don’t pretend racism doesn’t exist (I grew up in the South, so no worries there). Keep asking questions. I’m finding fighting politeness and social harmony when someone says something small-scale racist hard, especially when they are elderly.

    • I have trouble calling people out, too. When I was working the front desk at physical therapy, I’d talk to so many people and some of them…oof. There was one young woman who came in with a Blue Lives Matter shirt and it just made my blood boil. But when you’re at work it’s hard. So I never said anything, and I still don’t know whether there was a better alternative.

      It’s strange when someone you thought you liked comes out with something you totally disagree with. One older patient said to me that Trump is a “great man.” All I could say in a work environment was, “Yikes,” and I gave him a little side-eye, but I don’t know. White women are notoriously non-confrontational and I’m no exception. I’m working on it.

      I think people take advantage of the situation when they’re the patient or the customer, because you can’t respond the way you would if you were on equal footing.

      • I totally agree with all of your points. I’m also non-confrontational by nature and by years of retail. It’s hard to know what to do in any work environment, but especially one where you provide customer service. I think a polite “yikes” and side eye is better than nothing. Or “Wow, I disagree. Have a nice day!!”

  3. Oh and another thing I read somewhere is that white people make decisions about where to live, how to dress, what activities to do and to have their kids do totally based on race, because they are white, but it is never discussed in that context. That blew my mind a little and then made sense.