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What’s the female version of an Uncle Tom?

April 30, 2017 Leave a comment

img_1542This is it. I am turning the corner and shedding my attempts at being welcomed and accepted by the black community. This journey is my own. I will go my own way.

35 years and I am finally here. I will still have my moments of regression but I have since learned that several members of the black community have turned their backs on me after learning that I am pro-life and do not support Planned Parenthood. If this is what isolates me from the black community, so be it. I will fight for the right for developing cells/human beings/fetuses/babies to live.

It doesn’t matter that we probably agree on everything else. No war. No death penalty. No injustice. Social justice for racial minorities. Undocumented immigrants. LGBTQIA+ community. Trump is a lunatic.

I’m tired of hearing tirades against white people. I’m so over it. Stop ranting against white people, band together, and DO something other than protest.

I’m tired of blaming whitey for everything. Did whitey do their fair share of oppressing black people back in the day? Yes. But it’s  significantly better for black people to advance in 2017 than in 1967. The white people who oppressed black people aren’t the ones in power anymore. A new generation arose that rebelled against the segregation of their parents. Did anyone give any thought to those white people who thought segregation was wrong and unjust? (Just like the white people who thought slavery was wrong and unjust during the Civil War era?)

And then there’s the issue of reparations for black people. No, thank you. White people can keep their money and their land. See how well reparations worked out for Native Americans? Government-protected reservations with high crime rate, high gambling problems, high suicide rate, high drug use, and high alcohol use. Nope. No support for reparations from this here colored girl.

I’m a black American princess. I went to a Catholic school K-12. Started at NYU with $18K in grants and scholarships and graduated from Hofstra on LI with departmental honors. I interned for a high-profile NY senator for a semester. I was a successful, established sole proprietor for several years after a full-time stint as an entry-level editorial assistant didn’t work out.

All along the way, the people who reached out to me and helped me along to get me to the next level were…guess who?

White people.

In grade school, other black students made fun of me and cut me down as I tried to assert myself as a young, smart girl.

In middle school, the black kids (and “wiggas”) would shut me out of their core group while white people interested in their education would interact with me and eventually become lifelong friends.

In high school, perhaps the roughest period of my schooling, I attempted desperately to fit in with my black peers only to get made fun of or used for my intelligence for the next quiz or test. The only students who were willing to offer friendship without strings attached were white people.

Even the one black boyfriend I dated (in an effort to gain credibility with the black community) dumped me after he made an attempt to have sex with me and I kept to my vow of purity.

So the long and short of it is, black people and I just don’t get along. It’s taken me 35 years to realize this but better now than later. I will never have a black BFF. And I need to be OK with that. Because I have so many wonderful friends—of all other races, though mostly white—who I can rely on.

This is an issue that’s on my mind so I’ll probably be blogging about it for a bit. But I needed to get it out that white people are not my enemy. They literally are my friends.

The issue isn’t white but black

January 6, 2016 1 comment

black and white

I idolize wanting friendship and more contact with people of the same race. One of the common complaints I have about my life is that I don’t have contact with enough black people. I have plenty of white friends—that’s no issue. I have a set of diverse friends: Filipino, Indian/Sikh, Ethiopian/Muslim. But few black friends. I actually can count on one hand the number of black friends who aren’t related to me. My white friends are too numerous to count.

This is a problem. Somehow I’ve made it an issue that it’s important to surround myself with more black friends so I can be more “in tune” with black culture. I don’t fully understand the talk about white supremacy. I only partially understand the idea of white privilege and don’t fully agree with it. Ferguson was a big deal but how did it suddenly become a turning point in race relations? The deaths of Freddie Gray, Tamir Rice, and Sandra Bland are tragic, but how are they significant in the sense of how they play a larger role in racism?

You’d think because I’m black that these things would automatically make sense to me. But they don’t. I think Freddie Gray was surrounded by idiot cops, Tamir Rice was shot by a cop who should have never been let out of academy, and Sandra Bland paid the price of nervousness around a cop for failing to signal. (I have been guilty of the same when seeing a cop behind me; moving out of the way is instinctive and automatic. I make sure that my failing to signal doesn’t happen now.)

I don’t necessarily see race as the main factor in all these but I do think they play a role on some level. Had Sandra Bland been white, she would have had a slap on the wrist and been let go. A cop who saw a white boy with a gun would have been a bit more cautious about opening fire than making hasty judgments. And Freddie Gray was the victim of being a black man who seemed untrustworthy and would do or say anything to get out of being arrested.

I want to understand these things. I even want to understand these things to the point of agreeing with them. How is that white people get these concepts and I don’t? Is white guilt truly a thing that causes white people to hate themselves and blame their own race for injustices upon other races?

These are all questions I’m asking myself and wrestling with. I may never have a significant friendship with another black woman. And I need to be okay with that. Because I have friendships with wonderful people: secular and religious. They all teach me something and all make me a better person in different ways. And those kinds of friendships transcend all boundaries of race.

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