The Great Race Debate

I want to preface this post by saying that I am aware that Black and White people are not the only people that occupy the planet. I also want to say that from the moment of conception the great debate I have witnessed is the struggle between the two cultures of people and how we engage. So let’s talk about it…We’ve all done it. Tell a racial joke. Judge someone for being a different race. We’ve judged ourselves for being a different race. We’ve even judged races for past transgressions. Yes I’m referring to slavery because it happened. Still, for the sake of respecting other people’s view points I intend to share this blog from the “I” point of view. I’ve recently had a spike in my white friendship circle. It’s interesting because at this point last year I was surrounded by black folk, and immersed in black/queer communities that weren’t necessarily always kumbaya. Yet they were familiar, safe, and it was my community of race my people. If I wanted to talk about Black culture I could without wondering if they “knew” what I meant or not. They just knew it because they’d lived it. Well my environments have changes drastically since last year and I’m okay with it. I adore the company that I keep. I feel grateful for the friends that I have.

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I’d be lying however if I said that it is always comfortable. I always hear people say that comparing you as the Black person in the group is just like the person that is the only queer person or the only tall person we all have our differences. To a certain extinct this is true, but being Black in a room full of White folk has its challenges. I didn’t consider that the same could be true for the other way around. I was riding a bus with one of my white friends last night. She was literally the only White person on the bus. Our experience went a little something like this: 

Black Passenger: “Hey look it’s Lindsey Lohan and Oprah! Hey Lindsey! Look at that nose. I like your nose girl.”

White Friend: (Awkwardly tries to ignore passenger. To me goes) So do you have any siblings.”

Me: I’m sorry girl I’m easily distracted and this man is showing out.

Black Passenger: Hey Lindsey I likes me a snow bunny. One night with me and I’ll have your whole life.

White Friend: Girl I don’t think I could have rode this bus without you

Me: uncomfortable

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By the way the party didn’t end until after this man attempted to sit on my friend’s lap and proceed to call me Oprah 15 more times. It stopped once I finally said I don’t mean to be rude but we’re having a conversation. Several things popped into my mind. If she my friend had set the boundary then she would have been considered racist. If I had said listen fool stop acting out, then I would have been considered a coon. There was no winning. It made me wonder. Where do passive aggressive White and Black relating end and overt addressing of the issues begin? In my opinion, the way things are now are just so wacky.

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The thing is at least for me. I love to love. I’ve demonstrated that with so many of the choices I’ve made in my life. Loving women and I’d like to exercise my freedom to love all people too. Just writing that sentence feels like I’m opening Pandora’s Box. Still love is a choice and I choose love. It doesn’t mean that I love my people or my culture any less. It doesn’t mean that I don’t honor the history of my people. Still, the question has to be asked. Why does having white relations require a disclaimer? It’s the great race debate. I’m curious to know your experience. Thanks for stopping by. Let’s talk again soon! 

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