When I was a boy – about the 7th grade – some people dumped garbage on our front lawn. Several times. Because they were cowards, they did it at night. But they did leave a note telling us that they didn’t want us to move to their town because we were Jews. I was so embarrassed of my Daddy who just quietly got up – early – in the morning and cleaned up the garbage. Later I would tell people that If it had been me, I would have waited, in the dark for the fucker and shot him with a shotgun loaded with rock salt. Of course I wouldn’t have, and not just because I didn’t have a shotgun; it was just a fantasy that I used to punish what I thought was my Daddy’s powerlessness.
Somehow though, we – I – became white over the last 60 some-odd years and I never had to go through that with my daughter. But Black people, African-Americans, don’t get to white out like European-American Jews, even Eastern-European-American Jews.
Every once in a while, I read a blog post by Ta-Nehisi Coates that cuts to my core, that makes me so sad that we aren’t as good – as a country – as we like to brag that we are. This is one of those somethings. If you get a chance, read his post, The Secret Lives of Inner-City Black Males. It’s short.