"At the heart of racism is the religious assertion that God made a creative mistake when he brought some people into being"-Friedrich Otto Hertz
Since I was a child I have known that racism was wrong. I have never used a racial slur, in fact my stomach turns at the thought of it, and I cringe when it is said in my presence.
why do I feel this way?
Is it because my mother taught us that all races were equal...maybe. I never remember hearing an unkind word from her lips in regards to others race or even religion. And thus, I think I just learned that those "differences" were to be celebrated and not condemned.
Was it because I was exposed to different races all throughout my life...could be. From elementary school in Kirkland to high school in Bellevue, and onto college in Hawaii, I was constantly exposed to a multitude of races, religions, and upbringings. In high school, one of my best friends was a very devout Muslim and it was fascinating to learn about her culture. Then when I went to school in Hawaii it was a whole new experience. I was now in a minority, and it was fascinating to sometimes to be treated as such.
But why doesn't everyone feel this same way. Racial slurs, intolerance, and blatant racism, and ignorance are still alive and well...especially in this small town.
I have never heard so many racial slurs, jokes, or put-downs in my whole life. Is it the small town thinking, in-exposure to many other races, pure ignorance?
I have always been "sensitive" to the racial issues, and now being a mother of a bi-racial child, I am stunned at some of the comments that people make. Maybe it's ignorance, maybe they don't know what they just said was a little offensive, or at least on the questionnable side of racist and thus shouldn't have been uttered.
here are some of the things that have been said to me...
"such a cute baby. it must be so fun dressing up THOSE KINDS OF BABIES" (questionnable right? what did she mean by "those kinds". maybe she meant, chubby, maybe she meant tan skinned..it just didn't sound right)
"oh look at the cute black baby"
this drives me insane
let me explain why:
yes Qiana is part black. She is bi-racial. She will grow up being very proud of both of her cultures. but her race DOES NOT define who she is. If she is a cute baby, then she is a cute baby...BLACK has nothing to do with it.
being called a "black baby" just sounds derogatory.
also heard...(referring to bi-racial black and white children) "niglet or oreo".