Continuing with the WordPress Zero to Hero blogging challenge. Today’s challenge is to: “write the post that was on your mind when you decided to start a blog.”
A friend of mine and I were having lunch and he was telling me how surprised at how racist America is. He is from Sweden and biracial and although he is very fair-skinned he does have very African features. So, most people in the states classify him as a black male.
Anyway we’re eating and talking about race in America and the hostess seats a young white couple next to us and after a few minutes I could tell that they were becoming uncomfortable with our topic of conversation. But then I thought that’s what you get for listening.
My friend was telling me that in Sweden that there is racism, but not like here in America. As I explained to him America has a long long history of racism and it’s something we try to sweep under the rug and not talk about. I told him that as biracial child here in America you’re basically forced to choose which racial group you’re going to associate with and typically you’re not truly accepted by either.
I told him about the first time I was ever called a Nigger. I was about 9 or 10 and in the hospital and my 9 or 10-year-old suitemate told me that I was Nigger. I knew what it meant. My parents talked about it, and I thought still with some naiveté, “I’m not stupid nor am I ignorant.” And I also told him how in 2013 every few months I got a white person saying to me, “Oh you speak so well.” Really? How else am I supposed to speak? I’ve gotten to the point where I shake my head and walk away.
We both noticed the couple get really uncomfortable when I was talking about the first time I was called a Nigger. At that point I wanted to pull them into the conversation, but thought better of it because if they’re uneasy hearing about it through their eavesdropping then they probably wouldn’t be particularly comfortable with being dragged into a conversation about race in America.
Talking about race in America is not easy and it is a hot button topic. It’s a topic that I want to and will broach on this blog.
Please feel free to share your thoughts.