Saturday, January 11, 2014

Racisim. and Other Demons

{Note... I wrote this in the summer time, but took it down to make a few changes, which I have finally done :-)   }

Lately it seems, there has been a focus on celebs who use racial slurs... The latest victim of her own poor judgment is Paula Dean.
She has lost her show and gained the scorn of many North Americans by her use of the "N" word.
While my goal with this Blog has always been to focus on kindness and things that are positive, I thought that I would share my take on the whole Racism thing of today.
Being a person of colour(Half Black), Here is what I know:

My Grandfather was born in a Black settlement outside of Halifax called Africville. It isn't there anymore, because in the 60's, the residents of that community were forcibly relocated and the town was bulldozed. A nice park now sits on the space where he and 5 generations of his forefathers were born. He never really spoke about the harshness of racism in his life, He didn't have to.
My parents.. a Black Man and a White Woman together in the early 60's dealt with a society that didn't think it proper for the two of them to be together... I have heard some stories, they were not good and I admire both of them for following their hearts and not letting anything stand in their way.
As for my life, sure I've dealt with it when I was younger, to a lesser degree.. some name calling, some bullying... and as the non white kid I had "The Cooties"... But as I got older, it became more and more rare.. To be honest I don't remember when the last time was that I felt the sting of Racism.... I live my life, and people who meet me, judge me on all sorts of things.. but I never get the impression that race is one of those things... So when I hear people like Paula Dean and others use racial slurs, I don't think that society is racist... I think that the individual is... and the fact of the matter is.. in 1000 years from now,.. when race isn't even an issue.. there will still be jerks in the world who will say hateful things... It's just life.. But that won't be(Like it isn't) a measure of Mankind.. it will be a measure of an individual.

I know that I have been very blessed in my life. You just have to spend a few minutes watching the News to see that the fight to end racism is not over, but I dare say, that there are those who are suffering greater injustices.

For example... I am not a Caucasian man, but I have an education, I have a decent job.. and I can marry any woman foolish enough to say "I Do". Whether she is White, Black, Hispanic, Asian or any one else...People would celebrate with me.. Come to my wedding and buy us presents..... BUT, Heaven Help me, if the person I loved was a Man....Then Kiddies, In most of North America, I would have the Law against me, I would face persecution from many in society... It would be an act of bravery, just to hold hands with the person I love when we were walking down the street.
It's true... Not everyone would feel that way.. But enough would to make life very uncomfortable...And I guess what I am trying to say, is that while everyone and the media is obsessed that Paula Dean uttered a "No-No" word... We should all be OUTRAGED, That part of our civilized society, doesn't even have the same human rights and the very lowest of the rest of us. We should be outraged that some feel so alienated by who they are, that they have to hide it from the rest of us, That some still have to fight for the right to call themselves a Family.
It's actually a newsworthy item when someone "Comes Out".. Why is that???? I never had to "Come In" to my friends and family... Tom Cruise never had to announce that he was a Heterosexual Male, before he married whoever he's married to now... Even some who feel they are "Enlightened" will say things like "Sure, they can do whatever they want in the privacy of their own home.. as long as we don't allow them to have children."

Yes, it's true.. When I was a young teenager, I was as homophobic as the next guy.. Frankly I had never even met a Gay man until I was almost 20... and I thought he was pretty cool, not because he was Gay, he was just a lot of fun.
The point to that little confession is that I grew up, and like others, left my childish phobias behind. We can preach kindness and love all we want, but it doesn't mean much if with the other hand we hold back and oppress others who are equally deserving, just because we refuse to understand.

In the End, Kindness always wins.. even if it takes a long time, and we can choose to be part of the instrument of that kindness, or know that we were the stumbling block that tried to hold it back.

My Choice, like most of my choices, is the one that allows me to look myself in the mirror at night.. and like who I see.

Is that just me? Thankfully, No.


Peace Kiddies 


  1. Really great post, "Joe"! Bravo! I have always maintained that understanding was never the commandment - LOVE is. And the way we demonstrate love for each other is by being kind. I just can't see why so many miss something so simple. Thanks for a timely and thought provoking post.

    (I think you might have inspired "the Muse" yet again : )

  2. Thank You Sharon... You are the Coolest :-) I can't wait to read what "The Muse" cooks up :-)