Tuesday, May 24, 2011
Thinking in Black and White
I don't know if its the artist brain or my upbringing or even my neivity but I never see people as a color or race...ever. My parents, neither progressive or necessarly modern taught us kids that what mattered was the person you were. Color, status or background didn't enter into it.
And I went to a 'intergrated' (the politically correct term for the 60') school, so to me, we were all just poor kids. We all were from the basic economic background so we all were the same to me...
So imagine my shock on the playground (again...1966ish) and listening to the chants around the merry-go-round...'all the whiteys get off and push'...and then 'all the blackies get off and push'...it was a game that everyone involved played...no adgenda. But for me (and I remember it like it was yesterday) it was the very first time I realized there was a diference. I stood under the tree trying to make the information fit into the available space, then I rejected it outright.
I am afraid I have offended more people because I don't see the outward shell. Once, while teachng 'youth group' a beautiful girl was complaining about being hassled and treated differently and when I asked why she looked at me like I had 2 heads and said 'uh...cuz I'm black' and I blerted out...'you are?!!'...(forgive me Serria, where ever you are).
Its not because I am ignoring the challenges. Trust me, I'm not...I jsut see the shining, gleaming soul that is each person.
When I get my exchange students I don't realize they may be a different color and how the experience may be compromised in my little backwater school...and yet, learning the diferences makes us understand more, dosen't it?
I don't want to be the kind of person who looks at the outward and decide how to react...maybe that makes me one big damn hippy, but I'm ok with that.
I hope this didn't offend anyone but if you are black, yellow, gay, straight, big, little or in between...I just don't care.