In 2009, I was shocked to discover racism was still a “thing” in the United States. Yes, even in Los Angeles.
By 2013, I was no longer confused about the existence of racism here and now. Even so, it would be another couple years before I began really grasping how absolutely lethal is this racism in its many systemic forms.
Which is to say: In 2013, I hadn’t yet lost my sense of humor. I hadn’t yet begun to despair at my utter inability to help restructure systems to be less lethal. I could write a post like this one.
As you can see below, I hadn’t yet learned to capitalize the “b” in Black, or that even Bob (noun) doesn’t Bob (verb) all the time. But, hey! I did learn, eventually.
And the point here is: We all can learn, when we choose to listen. 🙂
Race & the willingness to see, or: “Don’t be Bob”
Originally posted on TMiYC
July 19, 2013
“Racism is dead, folks. Move on!”
“Why are we still talking about race? I’ve never once seen an act of racism. It’s only people in backwater Arkansas who still think like that.”
“I don’t see color, and neither does anyone else these days. I don’t see why some people still want to live in the 1950s when racism was actually a problem.”
I’ve seen dozens of variations on these words in the past few days. I’d look for direct quotes, but honestly, I’d get so grumpy scanning through comments for the verbatim gems I’d end up devouring a gallon of Ben & Jerry’s instead of writing this blog. (And I don’t even eat dairy! Or added sugar!)
Aren’t I pasty white person? Yes, indeedy! But as the pasty white mama of a lovely mocha-colored cub, I’ve been inspired to research race and racism in a way I wasn’t before, back when I thought it didn’t exist save in backwater Arkansas.