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Sat Feb 2, 2019, 06:15 PM

I was raised by racists

Raised to think that black people were inferior. Raised to think that there are “good” black people and there are “finger-popping N******”. My Dad, a big Swede who worked hard, worked along side of black men when he was a what used to be called “Garbage man” picking up curbside trash, altered his racism that much. He used to tell a story of how I hid behind his leg the first time I saw a black man, and roar with laughter. His racism altered with age, as did my mothers but never went away. My maternal grandmother never altered her racism one iota, calling a child of a friend of mine “a repulsive pickininny” I was in my 20’s by then

Anyway When compulsory busing started in the 70’s, I was exposed to black kids, and truth to tell, we rarely mixed, but one wonderful thing happened, I was required to take Black history. So books about Harriet Tubman and the Underground railroad and Sojourner Truth, the book “Black like Me”, I was precocious,reading all kinds of books on ethnicy and racism In middle school, books readily available

So began my education, and it continues to this day. I don’t know when the last time I used the N word as an epithet was, decades ago, but I do know by the 80’s I knew Blackface was not funny or cool. It was not something I ever would have done. To deliberately CHOOSE to mock a black person. I knew people who remained racist, but I had friends of different races by then. I began to choose my friends with more care, and this despite the fact by the time I was 30 I had experienced many things, drug addiction, homelessness, extreme poverty. But I still knew mocking other races was wrong.

I don’t understand people very well, or maybe I understand them too well, I dunno. Racism exists everywhere and and it is MY responsibility as a white person to call it out and condemn it. I don’t forgive it, because it’s not my responsibility to forgive it. I’m not a target of racism, I never was. And trust me, I spent time in more than one situation being the only “white girl” but, at the end of the day, I could always go back to white spaces and blend in. It didn’t matter.

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Arrow 7 replies Author Time Post
Reply I was raised by racists (Original post)
ismnotwasm Feb 2019 OP
guillaumeb Feb 2019 #1
treestar Feb 2019 #2
ismnotwasm Feb 2019 #3
treestar Feb 2019 #7
sheshe2 Feb 2019 #4
ismnotwasm Feb 2019 #5
mitch96 Feb 2019 #6

Response to ismnotwasm (Original post)

Sat Feb 2, 2019, 06:22 PM

1. Recommended.

My life experiences were different, and the American civil war was something that we briefly studied, but it was obvious that the slaveowners were on the wrong side of the war. And those who "re-enact" those times and play the part of the slave owning South are either in denial, or are racists. That also applies to the Southern flag wavers who insist on honoring their heritage of hate.

We all know, or have at least met, racists. Some are open racists, others are hidden racists.

My thoughts on the two types:

https://www.democraticunderground.com/100211763221

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Response to ismnotwasm (Original post)

Sat Feb 2, 2019, 06:27 PM

2. In the 80s it would have been a lot worse than even

today. Now you have MAGA hat wearing teenagers. In the 70s and 80s, it would be rare for teens or 20s to be that way.

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Response to treestar (Reply #2)

Sat Feb 2, 2019, 06:39 PM

3. I think there was a push for anti-racist education back then

We still had affirmative action. What ended up happening judging by today, is racists sat and stewed and started listing to Rush Limbaugh and shock radio and Andrew Dice Clay and pushing back against “political correctness”

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Response to ismnotwasm (Reply #3)

Sun Feb 3, 2019, 11:44 AM

7. Yes, that is what I remember

In the early 70s in 7th grade, we even had a unit in language arts on prejudice. It taught it as wrong. Uncool. So if my grandfather said something bigoted, I saw him as wrong rather than "learning" it from him. And we were closer to the 60s where older people were "square." Desegregation was starting up. And it was that way until Limbaugh started his whining and gave that older generation some support the idea they were the victims.

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Response to ismnotwasm (Original post)

Sat Feb 2, 2019, 06:43 PM

4. I miss your posts, ism.

My parents were pretty much okay on that front. I was taught diversity at a young age. My paternal grandmother was a racist, loved her, yet she called a friend of mine 'boy'. I went and apologized to him the next day. This was in the 60's and I was 14 years old. I knew then what was right and wrong.

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Response to sheshe2 (Reply #4)

Sat Feb 2, 2019, 06:53 PM

5. On the other hand

I have a brother-in-law who is racist and doesn’t give a shit. He raised three racist boys. But this is overt racism. His family won’t say anything in front of me because we quit talking to them for a long time and let them know why. Didn’t change their minds, only their behavior

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Response to ismnotwasm (Original post)

Sat Feb 2, 2019, 07:22 PM

6. "I was raised by racists"

Same here.. My Uncle would say some overtly racist things to black workers that to my 12 year old ears was horrible... Both of my parents (Greatest gen.) would say racist things just in a course of a conversation... It was like no big deal. And it wasn't like they did not know what discrimination was... My Mom told me about being denied jobs cause she was a Slovak.
My father because he was Jewish.. I guess in their generation you needed some one to dump on...

m

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