Growing up in a small north Alabama town where no blacks lived, I had little interaction with them until I started college at the University of Alabama. I was well aware that at this point in my life, I would certainly have a lot more interaction with blacks. I would be in class with them, I would be living close to them, if not having them as roommates, I would be socializing with them, and so on and so forth. While the term “new normal” was not used back then, this would be the “new normal” for me.
During my sophomore year, I lived next door to a black girl and we became the best of friends. I was the one who made the initial ice-breaking contact with her, and soon her black friends and my white friends were all friends. Even though we both moved out of the dormitory and into apartments my junior year and her sophomore year, we remained friends, had some great times together, and continued to remain friends until we were in our mid-twenties and life caused us to drift apart. Like all friends, we did have our “tiffs,” but that’s normal for everyone.
I’ve always lived according to the teachings of Dr. Martin Luther King to judge people by the content of their character and not the color of their skin. Now that the Civil Rights legislation of the mid-sixties had lifted the barriers, we can become a color-blind society. The only reason I felt like skin color should be used would be for identification purposes and maybe marketing purposes. For example, if I owned a tanning salon, my core target market would not include blacks for obvious reasons, it’s not a service most really need.
I’ve always been against affirmative action programs because I feel they demean minorities. It’s telling minorities that you’re inferior and need help to achieve. That’s BS! As a Republican, I do feel that the Republican Party is the best party for anyone, including minorities and that the Democrat part is the real racist party. It’s the Democrats who think that minorities, including blacks, are inferior and need help from whites. Again, that’s BS!
There is a question that I have often put to blacks and whites: with Civil Rights Legislation, there was forced desegregation in most areas of our society. However, one area where there was not forced desegregation was our churches and houses of worship. And to this day, we have white churches and black churches with very little overlap. Why is this? You would think that churches would be the first places to desegregate, but no. But I think that may be beginning to change slightly, which I’m happy about.
I did ask a black friend to visit my church several times. One time she asked me what we did at my church. I said that we did what most people in church do. We sing hymns, pray, and the minister delivers the message which is directly from the Bible. Then the friend said she didn’t want to be the only African-American there. While there are no blacks who regularly attend my church, we do have the occasional visitors who are black. At my church, everyone is welcome. The black friend did hurt my feelings a bit. I was sincere about her visiting my church, and she seemed to flippantly dismiss my invitation.
One black friend that I often go out to eat with, will say that the waiter/waitress is prejudice if the service is slow and the waiter or waitress is white. Then if the service is a little fast, she says, “I wonder if they’re trying to rush us out.” I’m so sick of hearing that.
I’ve been accused of being prejudiced because I don’t like turnip greens. And one time I asked a black friend what time she got out of church on Sunday so we could plan something for that afternoon. This friend responded in a somewhat snarky manner, “just when we get out.” Then I suggested that she get up and leave if the service goes a little long. I shouldn’t have said that, and ended the conversation telling her that if she couldn’t reasonably guarantee that she would be able to meet up and attend the matinee, let’s just forget about it. “Oh, no, no, no, we can do this, “she said. We did meet up at a designated time and went to the matinee. I’m pretty sure this person was just trying to give me a hard time.
Another time, I had arranged for a black friend of mine to pick up a white friend of mine and meet me somewhere. It was a little more detailed than this, but the details aren’t important. The black friend replied, “I don’t know, he might be prejudiced.” I lost it and told the black friend to get out of the fifties and sixties and into the second decade of the twenty-first century. She replied, “I guess I just made a bad joke.” I was mad and she knew it.
In some of the smaller cities and townships in the Birmingham area, your city address is “Birmingham, Alabama.” I think this is limited to those zip codes that begin with “352.” For example, the city of Homewood is a separate and distinct city with a city government. The zip code is 35209. If you’re in that zip code, you are Birmingham, Alabama, not Homewood, Alabama. In the suburb of Pelham, Alabama, the zip code is 35124 and your city address is Pelham, Alabama, not Birmingham, Alabama. Of course, people use do use Homewood, Alabama, Vestavia Hills, Alabama, Hoover, Alabama, etc. as their city/state. While it’s technically wrong, mail does still get to them. I heard someone once say to use Homewood, Vestavia Hills, Hoover, was racist. Now how can you possibly, with a straight face, connect those dots?
These things are minor, but they seem to have happened happen to me a lot. Liberals now add to the definition of racism to fit whatever suits their needs at the moment.
You’re a racist if you rooted for the Denver Broncos with white quarterback Peyton Manning over the Carolina Panthers with black quarterback Cam Newton. You’re a racist if you don’t like Gangsta Rap. You’re racist if you like country music; the only reason you like Darius Rucker is because liking him makes you feel good about your racist self. If you say “All Lives Matter” you’re a racist.
And then to the big one, if you don’t support Barak Obama and his policies, you’re a racist. I’ve addressed this many times and won’t re-hash it here.
I have folks telling me and everyone else that the “Black Lives Matter” movement is a righteous and peaceful movement, that the person who gunned down those police officers in Dallas was not a part of “Black Lives Matter.”
The “Black Lives Matter” movement arose out of the Ferguson, Missouri shooting of Michael Brown. Before the investigation and the facts were complete, liberals, including black liberals, were shouting “hands up don’t shoot” then “black lives matter.” The “hands up don’t shoot” didn’t happen. It was a lie. Thus, “Black Lives Matter” was predicated upon a lie.
Then you have the “Black Lives Matter” movement holding demonstrations and chanting things like “pigs in a blanket, fry ‘em like bacon, and “what do we want, dead cops, when do we want it, now.” I watched the video of the “Black Lives Matter” rally held in downtown Birmingham last night. While there was no rioting, looting, or destroying of property (we don’t do that down here), the tone was anti-white and anti-police. Also, demonstrators were chanting “hands up, don’t shoot.”
I don’t agree with those who say it’s a good, peaceful movement. Instead, I consider it a hate group. Can someone tell me why I should think differently?
I have often said that I didn’t understand why liberals, including black liberals, protest to the point of looting and rioting when someone black dies at the hands of someone white, which are isolated incidents; but do not appear to care about scenarios such as Chicago where multiple blacks are killed almost every night and certainly on weekend nights by other blacks. If the scenario in Chicago could be minimized, it would go a long way to saving black lives, especially young black lives. But I’m called a racist and other things for uttering such. Why am I such a horrible person for pointing out a scenario where more blacks are killed in gang-related incidents than isolated incidents? It sure looks to me like only some black lives matter.
Like everyone else, I have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. But I have tried, as a young college student and an adult, to reach out to blacks. Yes I have become cynical about race, particularly over the last 7-1/2 years and feel like I have been kicked in the teeth and in the stomach. Why should I not feel this way? Please tell me.
Note: I do have many black friends who have not treated me in the ways that I described above. I don’t intend to stop trying to make black friends. While there are some things I will not put up with, I do not intend to give up on my efforts to make our society a color-blind one.