Tag Archives: racism

Racism Part 2 -What Are You Willing to Give Up?

GoldenRule

Painting by Norman Rockwell

OK, so you say “This is it”.  You have been angry in the past and have voiced strong opinion, but the death of George Floyd just switched something on.  You have talked more about racism in America and have written the words “Black Lives Matter” on your blog and Facebook pages.  Hell, maybe you even posted a sign in front of your nice suburban home.

Good.

And you’ve gone farther. Continue reading

Racism – Admitting That There is a Problem

GoldenRule

Painting by Norman Rockwell

One of the big problems with racism in America is that a lot of people, white people, only think of it in extremes.  They will admit that there are still some racist people around, but not a lot, except, possibly, in places like Mississippi.  That is, except for people in Mississippi, who say Mississippi is not racist, maybe it exists elsewhere, not here.  Not in America.   I mean, sure, there are some Klansmen running around, but everyone hates them, right?  I mean, I hate the KKK, so I can’t be racist.   That is how people see it – if there are no extremes, there is no racism.

Uhm, no.

It is easy to find many types of racism at many levels.

At work there are those people who think they are well meaning but might say some insensitive things here and there, not realizing that it makes some of their team members feel unwanted.  And then there is that hiring person who doesn’t realize that for some reason they call a person named James much quicker than Jamel, that they hire someone, who coincidentally is white, because they will fit in with the group better than the other candidate, who just happens to be black.  Study after study shows this happens all of the time.  It is the rule, not the exception. Continue reading

If We Were Having Coffee on the Sixth of June, 2020

Coffee on Cape Cod

Hello and Welcome!  Come on over and sit down!  Actually, it is pretty wet out, but there is a sheltered area – it’s like a wall-less room off of the side of the back barn just to the right of the photo at the top.  I think the rain has stopped and it will be a nice day.  Where are we?  Some may recognize that photo as being from Cape Cod.

I’m not sure what to talk about this week.  The same=old, same-old, of course – work, walking the dogs, exercise, etc.  Weather – after being so hot, the temperatures crashed, but they have come back up to normal now.  Lack of hair cuts – I tell people I am going after the Franz Liszt look… (google it ;) )  I haven’t been blogging much the last few days.

Then there is the wider world.  Yeah.  Perhaps I will do a longer post on that later.  It is very complex, but people simplify it so much. Sigh.  OK, real quick: Continue reading

They Said it was Over years Ago #doublenonet #tanka

Eagle

It happened again
How can a human do that?
Pain of the centuries
My hand fits nicely in yours
Bound by our humanity

Years ago they told us all is well
Humans judged by their character
Full equality for all
They said the world is fair
The battle was won
One family
United
In peace
Love
But
They lied
Still two worlds
One rule for “them”
Fear of the other
Blind eye turned to the truth
Indifference to suffering
A world of hate and division
They said it was over years ago

***

These joined poems were written for Colleen’s Poetry Challenge.  This week was poet’s choice. I wrote a double-nonet and a tanka

Hidden Figures – Almost a Review

hidden-figures

A few weeks ago, I read the book “Hidden Figures” by Margot Lee Shetterly.  I really liked the book and can’t imagine the movie covering one tenth the ground it did.  There is so much context and background in the book, and yet I know the author was still only scratching the surface.

This is not a review of the book (review = excellent.  Read it).  I just want to say something about the book, something that I thought about as I read it but that is even more relevant after the recent events in Charlottesville.

A lot of this book is about racism at its ugliest, but also how some people were able to rise above it, or perhaps “rise in spite of it” would be a better phrase.  A little background about how hard it was for people of color, and blacks in particular, to get ahead in the pre-World War II era was needed to place the events of the book in context.  There were black professionals back then, but for the most part they were segregated, dealing with the black community at much lower pay than their white counterparts.  The idea brought out in the book that they had to accomplish twice as much to achieve half of the recognition, unfortunately, is still with us to some degree to this day. Continue reading

A Thought for Today

earth

Montrell Jackson recently said on Facebook that it was hard to be a black police officer in Baton Rouge.  In uniform some of the people he was trying to serve hated him but out of uniform some of his coworkers saw him as a threat (source – BBC).  Just a few days ago he also wrote, “These are trying times. Please don’t let hate infect your heart. This city MUST and WILL get better.” (source CNN)  And, quoting CNN, ‘to all the protesters, officers, friends, family and neighbors in need of a hug or a prayer in Baton Rouge, he offered a promise: “I got you.”’  This was a good man and a good place to start healing between the black community and the police in a city still in shock over the shooting of Alton Sterling.

Montrell Jackson was gunned down by an angry young man who thought he was fighting a war against injustice.

A friend of mine attended a Black Lives matter protest in Manchester, NH.  It was a peaceful event and the protesters and police chatted and shook hands.  Off to the side there were several young white men carrying assault weapons.  They were the only ones not smiling, not shaking hands, not being friendly.  As the shooting in Dallas showed, the “Open Carry” folk don’t help, they actually make the problem worse if there is an active shooting incident.  These people didn’t care.  They were there to try to bully and intimidate black people.  They were there because of their racism, though I bet you $1000 that none of them consider themselves as racist. Continue reading

Selma +50 – the Dreamers and the Dream

selma

Just a quick thought.  I was looking at this AP photo on the BBC site.  The caption mentioned that some of the people marching were beaten 50 years ago.  They were beaten because they wanted to vote.  Do you think any of them would have dreamed they would some day march the same route with an African American president that they help elect?  No matter your politics, this is a great, historic picture.  In this picture you have those who dared to dream and there with them, holding their hands, is the product of their dreams. Continue reading

Review – “Hidden in Plain Sight”

GoldenRule

I know I just said I was going to review books of fellow bloggers, but I saw a review of this book by Jane Allen Petrick on Marilyn Armstrong’s blog, Serendipity, and I felt like I had to read it.  I’m glad I did, as you’ll see.

When you think of Norman Rockwell and his art, what usually crosses your mind? Most people think about drawings and paintings depicting normal (white) people in plain (white) folksy settings, usually in (white) middle American, doing normal (white) things. The drawings are often very realistic and tell stories with a bit of humor yet respect for the (white) subjects. Some might even hold him up as someone who illustrated Good Old Fashioned (White) American Family Values.

Did I say most people see Norman Rockwell’s vision of America as being very Caucasian? Continue reading