I’m not one to write about race issues, but that doesn’t mean I’m not affected by what’s going on in the world. I have a deep relationship with my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, which gives me the strength to move on no matter what. I usually share my opinion with the people who are closest to me and I steer clear from social media arguments. If I disagree with something, I just move on because we are all entitled to our opinion.
My silence may give one the impression that perhaps I’ve never experienced racism or if I have, it’s a thing of the past. The truth is, I have experienced racism more often than I care to speak or think about. I think the first time I noticed racism was when I was 8 or 9 years old. My brother and sister were in a car accident one bitter cold December night in Calumet City, Illinois. Back then, Calumet City was predominately white and so were all the police officers at the police station. After waiting for hours, I had to go to the restroom. When I asked where the restroom was, I was told they didn’t have one that I could use even though the white little girl, who was also waiting in the lobby with her family, was escorted to the restroom a few minutes earlier. Unfortunately, I had to use the restroom outside in the bitter cold. I’ve been called the “n” word several times while driving through Orland Park, Illinois where I worked for about five years before moving to California. Oh and one time my sister and I were standing in line at Jewel. (A grocery store in Illinois, but I can’t remember the city.) This lady called us the “n” word because she thought we cut a head of her in line. She didn’t realize the line curved.
I think one of my craziest experiences happened with Tara, a coworker. We worked at a department store called Carson Pirie Scott in Orland Park, IL. During our break, we went to Buy the Weigh candy store. As we walked by the nuts, she laughed and yelled, “N______ Toes!” She told me that was what her father called Brazil nuts. She continued giggling as I told her how offensive it was.
Recently, my husband and I went to the Staples in our area. The Sharpie Marker display clearly had the “n” word written in huge letters on it. I politely told one of the workers. Surprisingly, she knew it was there and it had been there for a while. Why did I have to say something before it was removed? I’ve been accused of stealing, cheating, and even violent for merely pointing out an injustice.
I’ll stop there even though I can go on and on. Don’t get me wrong, I know everything isn’t about race. But please understand that because of the color of my skin, I’ve been treated unfairly and I KNOW IT!! What’s my point? I saw this on FB today:
As a follower of Christ, I know all lives matter. As a black person who has experienced racism first hand, I also know screaming “all lives matter” in situations where it’s important to face the injustice that’s happening to a group of people is a huge slap in the faces of the people in that group and several gigantic steps backward in society. No I don’t believe all cops are bad or all white people are racists. That’s patently absurd. I think it’s just as absurd to believe we are all treated equally.
I will continue to pray for our society and keep focusing on the Lord. Here’s another meme I saw on FB:
Just blogging it out . . . Oh and if you’re approached by the police, don’t resist. Your life matters!!! 😦 #tellyourownstory
P.S. I realize not resisting doesn’t always keep you safe.