Saturday, September 5, 2009

Never ready

I had my first incident with racial ignorance tonight. I am still in shock. It happened as we were leaving Barnes and Noble. Noelle, her friend, Sabrina and I. A man walked by us and made quick rude remarks and called my daughter the n word. By the time I processed what was said, I only saw the back of his shirt. I convinced myself that anyone that ignorant was not worth chasing down to explain the situation (adoption). As I sit with the incident I realize that I would have felt better if I had defended my daughter, even if he was still an idiot. I also realize that explaining that our situation was adoption might make it sound like I believe that there is something wrong with biracial relationships (I hope that is the right terminology). What makes a person who they are is not their skin color. As Noelle and I talked about the incident, it was interesting process it with her. I hope that I always form my opinions about people on things that are important: their relationship with God, their character, the way they treat other, etc.

My stomach still hurts. Any advice on how to handle this when it happens again? I know that it will. Our little town, at one point, was a hotbed of racial disturbances.

1 comment:

theMom said...

I can somewhat imagine how you feel. Not anything so personal, of course, but the shock value is perhaps similar. I really, truly assumed that racism and racial ignorance was a thing mostly in America's past until I moved up here. I have had various conversations with a few (not a lot) of people, in which it becomes very clear that they perceive people of color and immigrant groups and even foreign adoption, (You know all those homeschool types who have to go to other countries and bring in these foreign kids...) as anathema. I was truly shocked an offended when I first heard it. One person, in particular, takes pride in her college educatedness, and then comes out with such offensive language...

I'm sorry this has happened.