Thursday, September 4, 2014


Today was hard. I was accidently or inadvertently bullied by a classmate. She scratched through my name I had written on a list and she didn’t apologize until I had confronted her about it. Not the end of the world but to see my name scratched out without any warning made me pretty upset. Then in human behavior class we talked about race. We started talking about white privilege and the lack of black privilege. I only know I am privileged because I do not face oppression or prejudice. The lack of these things is what causes me to accept my privilege. It is not a bad I wear or anything I have literally ever thought about until today. Even in recent events of Ferguson or back when I learned about the KKK I was scared but I never thought it meant me. It was always an us and them issue but I would never name myself an us and black people a them. Honestly no black person I have ever known granted that isn’t too many has ever talked about being oppressed or how white people treat them differently. I did not know it happened every day to practically every black person. Blatantly like Michael brown being shot or subtly as in girls being followed in the grocery store or people literally walking on the other side of the street as a black male. I did not know. The article we were discussing was written by a white woman basically saying that her three white kids have white privilege and always will and all she can do about it is teach them not to shoot black people. She was more eloquent than I am but that was the gist of it. None of the black people in class disagreed that the article was good. They agreed that was about all white people can do. Racism won’t go away. We can try to have conversations about it with whites and blacks and hope our children have black friends and see how they are treated. The black people in class said when they have children they will tell them that white privilege is a thing and to not piss the white people off and to not be shot. They said nothing else could be said about it. Regardless of education, outward appearance, sophisticated use of language. None of it matters they said. I did not know. Lord come. I don’t know what to do. I just feel heavy. I don’t think I’ll ever have kids so I can’t raise them any way. I can have those conversations with people. I can love them and treat them with respect. I can actively seek to empower them instead of dehumanizing them. What else is there to do? I am sad and mad and at a loss. Maybe farther along we will understand why but tonight I am just mad. Mad that girls and guys in my classes alone and also in the whole world are treated unfairly based on skin pigment alone. I am mad that for 23 years I thought things on the news or the KKK were isolated incidents and sad and tragic and freak accidents that stupid ignorant white people did. I am mad that I too and stupid and ignorant and probably somewhere, or often if I’m being honest, I’ve treated someone different or held biases deep down, or made judgments based on skin pigment. If you had asked me yesterday if I would ever consider myself racist I would say no. I would be one of those people who would say I have black friends, I would date a black man, I want black babies. All those are shitty excuses and band-aids for the problem and issue of white privilege. Someone brought up the thought of White guilt in class today and how we feel guilty for having slaves when that wasn’t really us or our family but really it kind of was us and how are we supposed to feel now. The black people in class said guilt wasn’t the answer. They said they don’t talk about slavery or talk about being oppressed or talk about Ferguson in order to produce guilt or sorrow in white people everywhere. They talk about it to shed light on it. That’s the conclusion we came to today. That shedding light on things and talking about it and creating safe spaces are about all we can do. We can talk, we can show them real articles, we can remind them that Michael Brown was a real person with a real family and was really shot by a white police officer for no reason. Just as much as they don’t deserve to be oppressed I don’t deserve to be superior. We both didn’t ask for these positions in life. Our parents just had more or less melanin in their skin. I don’t know how the world got so fucked up or why it did. Lord, come.  I do not know. I don’t know what happens now. Like I said, maybe all I can do is shine light and keep talking. We can’t keep living in ignorance. Maybe things will change, maybe they won’t. They definitely won’t if we keep putting band aids on the problem and pretending like it’s only their problem. If we are going to generalize them as all black people who deserve to be treated this way then we have to generalize us too and call us all racist. Nothing is separated. We all have hearts. 

i think life is a little hard right now. i have felt more materialistic than i maybe ever have. pretty much daily i am buying something, or ...