Saturday, November 8, 2008

On taking offense

I belong to an e-mail group of people I graduated from high school with. This week, there was much and varied election discussion. I'm all for people not agreeing and not being happy, or being very happy, with who wins an election. This year's presidential election brought out many strong feelings on both ends of the spectrum. After one e-mail tirade (about how Obama is going to take away our civil rights AND all our money), one of the listee's went on to say something like, "is it just me, or does Obama look like BJ Armstrong?" I don't even know who BJ Armstrong is. But then someone sent another e-mail with their pictures side by side. What do you think?

I'll be the first to admit that maybe I have some baggage related to issues of race. But, for the life of me, I don't really see any resemblance except for (sorta) their skin color. They both are brownish, although completely different shades of brown. Their eye, mouth and face shapes are totally different. I took offense and responded saying besides the fact that they're both African American I didn't see any similarity. Discussion on the e-mail list skidded to a complete halt. Nothing else was said about it.

So my question is, what I over-reacting? All I heard in my head was "they all look alike" and all the racism, overt and otherwise, that goes along with that. I won't apologize for being touchy about issues like this. The people I love the most are very affected by these things in ways I can only imagine. I've never been followed around in a store like the shop-keeper thinks I'm going to steal something, but I've been with my husband when it's happened to him. And I know that's just a tip of the iceberg.

I feel such hope for the future of my children and ALL children, that our country was able to rise above superficial issues like race in last week's election. But there's a long road ahead.

A brave new world requires a brave new mind.
Author Unknown
But Greatly Appreciated!


kristin said...

a very. long. road. indeed.

kristin said...

a very. long. road. indeed.

Danelle said...

The two do not look alike at all. No, you were not being too touchy at all!

I'm glad you commented on my blog because I did not have your link to yours since it's on my other laptop...ya, that one that isn't working!

Beverly said...

No resemblance.