See I’m white as all hell. I grew up in a little bubble in the country where there was only one black kid, because he was adopted and thus ‘one of the good ones’(shudder). The whole town is apocalyptic ‘we need to prepare for the race war’ style paranoid, with hidden gun nests and stockpiling ammunition in basements. One single cop would drive down the road every Sunday and ask my brother and If we were studying hard and to pay attention in church.
Now in all rights I should have fallen into the trap of that environment and become disgustingly racist, but luckily I got to escape that and go to a boarding school where I got exposed to a lot of different people. Oh man, my eyes were opened once I met young black and latino kids from places like New York city and Philly and they told me what it was really like. Way too many of them were threatened by or have had family members killed by cops. One of my good friends nearly got shot when a cop opened fire on a suspect with no regard for civilian safety, as the bullet went through a window in a car she was sitting in and missed her by inches. The cop didn’t care, why -should- he! There was BROWN people around! (retch)
It made me think back to that cop that would drive up every Sunday and a looked at it with news eyes. What if I was black? Would he have been so kindly? Probably not. The only thing he cared about was my skin color. If I were black he would have probably found some reason or another to harass me and I know it.
I was lucky to spend most of my life in that school, even though it had severe and horrible problems. I was exposed to and made so many different friends. I could ask questions and listen to other people’s experiences. I learned about how horrible the world is to anyone not white and my eyes were opened. It got to a point I’d look at one of my friends going home of the holidays back to Philly and I would get scared, because because they are black, there was no guarantee they would come back unless it was a headline in a newspaper about yet another cop killing another black child. I learned to distrust cops, because I know they’d put on a little mask for someone like me, but become something evil and horrifying to innocent POC.
One of my dear friends lives in New York and gets constantly harassed by the police because he has really lovely long dreadlockish braids. Apparently, having really nice hair and being black is enough to be harassed and looked at with suspicion. My boyfriend is black and now I find myself worrying if he’ll come home safe when he goes out somewhere. People should not have to worry about the people they love getting killed by cops and never coming home again. Again this isn’t a new problem, police in PA have supported the KKK before and will do so again. Police have been killing people for a long time, it’s just now harder to hide in the age of digital media where cops can be filmed and photographed easier than say the 60’s during the Civil Rights marches.
What I’m saying is that I’m white. I will never EVER experience life like a Black or other POC people in this country. But being white means that I need to shut up and listen to other people, read, be vigilant. I no longer talk to my family because they made it clear that they would probably injure me for ‘daring’ to date and love someone who’s black. And want to raise children with him! Oh no! But that doesn’t compare at all to how hard POC have, not even close. Is it weird at all for me to just be like ‘MAN, FUCK WHITE PEOPLE’ sometimes? Because it’s to me like they are refusing to open their eyes and see through the rainbow magic land they see America through, and see what really lies beyond.
I just want to say that I love my friends and I’m grateful I got the opportunity to know and grow to be a well rounded person and man I just wish people would open their goddamn eyes and stop supporting murdering cops and see racism for what it is.