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View Full Version : Healing Everyone



Kim Fierce
07-25-2013, 02:33 AM
While driving down the street around my neighborhood last night looking for my dog I passed a group of teenagers, just sort of gave them a nod and drove on, heard one say "She lost." Then a girl yelled "Get on out of here!" as I turned a corner. But none of the others joined in.

I feel like I should have announced that I was looking for my dog, so as not to be thought of as someone lost I guess. But it's not like I had my windows rolled up and doors locked, I was hanging out the window squinting cuz my contacts were already out when my silly dog ran out the door because I was trying to put a bug outside. It was past midnight, so I didn't want to drive down the street yelling "YOSHI!" haha. It way too dark out to see anyone in the group clearly, but I live in a diverse area . . . diverse enough that some white people who asked where I live (since I just moved there a few months ago) are shocked that I live there, but I have no problems and prefer diversity over an "all white" neighborhood any way. I was driving down a street which apparently has some sort of reputation according to this white co-worker, but I don't tend to worry about those things because from birth to age 5 I lived on the corner of the worst such reputed road in the same town, so I never knew what the big deal was. (I spent the rest of my childhood in a 99.9% white town but have lived in my current town off and on for most of my adult life.)

That teenager might have just wanted to yell at any random person no matter what, and I don't even know her race, but just hearing the other white people's opinions and questions when they heard about my general area might have made me question why the one yelled. Maybe it's just a case of other people's wrong opinions crowding my brain. I have been asked "isn't that a 'dark' area?" and "Do you hear gunshots at night?" and all kinds of crazy crap. (Answers: the area seems to be about equally racially mixed, and no gunshots. And please get into this century.) I think maybe what is bothering me most is that I hear these things from others. I might not have even had any of these thoughts about the situation if I hadn't heard these things recently (we have been thinking of moving to a house on that same street, but might not be able to get out our lease yet. So I was discussing this when I heard some opinions on the rep of the street, which is only 2 blocks from where I live right now.)

I also feel like in my experience, my introverted nature has to be overcome at times so I don't get assumed to be someone who I am not. In the case of last night, at least one person seemed to think I was someone who took a wrong turn in her Mom Van and was out of place. It is sad to get put in any kind of stereotypical role, even dumb white girl or scared white girl, or whatever. But the sadder part is that I have seen enough white people talk shit when there are "no other PoC around" that I don't feel it's unusual for PoC to wonder if someone non-white is going to be a nice person or not upon first meeting them until you get some kind of cue.

I don't even know if I have a question. But our country just needs something to happen because there is still so much healing that needs to take place... but sometimes nothing seems to be happening to really help it, except each new younger generation is better than the one before about it.

But you see, some people say "race shouldn't be an issue" (I heard so much about this on the Trayvon case) but the thing is, sometimes like last night, you don't know if it was or not, it could be, you don't know how to make things right but sometimes it would just take one extra word or effort I guess.

Kaarl
07-25-2013, 05:40 AM
Teenagers, like everyone can be ass hats sometimes. Colour doesn't always enter in to it as far as I am concerned; its more often the pack mentality.

From your post I assume you are a Caucasian woman which (not to be sexist or racist) makes you a soft target to a bunch of teenagers. They know they can hurl insults, look "cool" in front of their mates and the potential backlash is minimal. You could always have been a gun toting maniac looking for somewhere to start your rampage but kids are dumb.

Had it been 300 pound steroid infused man (regardless of race) do you think they would have acted the same ?

I have no experience in the US but having lived in NZ, Australia and the UK for years each at a time this has been my experience.

I think nothing short of an Alien invasion would forge us together and if we won and after the dust had settled we'd be back to judging each other based off of colour in a few days.

I agree that race shouldn't be an issue but in the wider sense of the World we live in it is. Some people look past colour and take each person as they come, others don't. They say don't sweat the small stuff but it applies to some of the big issues as well. It'd be nice if there was a silver bullet for racism but I have the horrible feeling there isn't one beyond genocide. Such is life.

Kim Fierce
07-25-2013, 08:10 AM
Yeah I used to be a really crazy teenager but now I am freaking 32 lol.

I did so many dumb things when I was young that this is definitely not the top of my crazy list but I felt like I could have done something different. Or maybe not and I am overanalyzing! (Happens all the time at random moments.)

Rachel Udin
07-25-2013, 05:24 PM
Take it as the individual, plus years of dealing with crap from ignorant people that will auto-call you violent, follow you around in stores, follow you in a car, or threatened by the inherent disparity in both socio-economic status and general societal social status. (See Obama's speech on the Trayvon Martin Case. He was choking up in bits...)

In this case, since the top dictates the racism, the best thing you can do is speak up when someone says crap like "race doesn't apply here" when it clearly does. It's always the dominant power group that needs to understand, and then healing can occur. People are limited in understanding how there is diversity and diversity within groups. It makes the world easier to define in terms and delineate (which is one function that culture gives as comfort), but at the same time it cuts you off from seeing the range of possibility.

Much to the distress sometimes of my relatives, and even when I get no support, I'll challenge prejudice every single time. I will get angry and upset. I will argue with the person if need be and bring in the intellectual and the heart to beat them.

We need to use the Bystander Rule as well as education. Because as the reaction to the Cheerios commercial showed with children, there is hope through education and saying something is wrong. But I think as my Ethnicity teacher pointed out, education has to start with the dominant power group, probably more than the minority power group. (Because who fills women's study classes? Women. Who fills ethnicity classes? PoCs... something is really wrong with that.)

Kim Fierce
07-25-2013, 06:07 PM
Just last night someone was talking about how his 16 yr old niece is pregnant and added both his nieces are gonna be bad influences to his daughters because the nieces got pregnant early...then he adds "and both by black guys." I had to say "not a black guy!" Then he backtracked and said the one might have 8 possible fathers but what the fffff. Teen pregnancy, not cool. Being a candidate for Maury, not cool. Having a child with a black parent. Its gonna be ok. They all know I have black and biracial family but I do still have to say shit sometimes. There are people I have to be around at work but we wouldn't be cool on the outside!