99 problems but being black ain’t one


I have the best of intentions with zero follow through.  I’m not sure if this is good or bad.  It could be good because at least I care and take the time to think about and talk about things, but it could be worse that I think and talk about things, but never bother to do anything about well…. anything.  This weeks examples are sweat shop clothing, homelessness, and racism.  I really wanted to get into the sweat shop thing, but then I started typing about racism and could not stop.  So…….

Racism drives me crazy.  When I see people use air quotes on facebook when using the word racism or the term race war, I want to crawl through the screen and strangle them.  To suggest that racism is not a huge issue that bazillions of people have to face every day of their lives is asinine. Let’s take this one, miniscule example….


In Tampa, FL of 10 bicycle riders are stopped by police, EIGHT of them are black.  EIGHT OF THEM.  One elderly black man had his bike confiscated after being stopped by a police officer who demanded to see the RECEIPT for the bike to prove it was his.  The receipt.  That would NEVER HAPPEN to me, ever.  Because I am a white lady.

I don’t get up in the morning thinking there is a possibility that I may have a run in with the police just because of the color of my skin. 

I don’t ever have to worry about being over while driving, be questioned about what I am ‘up to’ while walking because of the color of my skin.

I am not ‘used to,’ being monitored while I am shopping because I “look suspicious,” just because of the color of my skin.

Can you imagine having to live on edge like that ALL THE TIME!!???  Of COURSE you are going to have a bit of a chip on your shoulder!  Even us ‘first world white folks’ have all had those terrible days when we felt like the world was against us and everything was going wrong…. it makes us pretty damn cranky and worn out. Try having MOST of your days feel like that for the only reason being that your skin is not lily white.

So this leads me to my all talk, no action issue.  I am a white girl in Maine.  I live in a state that is 95.2% white.  I live in a state where racism really is not something we face every day because… well… we are mostly white, so there is nothing for us to be faced with.  So what I am I going to do to fight racism??   I read an article the other day about what white people can do to fight racism, hoping for ideas, but it was kind of a useless fluff piece with a lot of words boiling down to “just listen and be compassionate to others.”  Well duh!

So I guess all I can do is what I do already.  I wrote this blog post.  And I always speak up when rednecks make racist comments in person, and on facebook (I have lost several FB ‘friends’ for this…. good riddance).  ….that’s about it.  Oh yeah…. I will also work hard to listen and be compassionate to others.  DUH!

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