getting my house in order

getting my house in order
it's a jungle out there

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

wtf... i can't...

So...

This morning I dropped the kids off at the high school and noticed police cars in the parking lot. Yesterday there was an incident with a student who apparently made a threat, so today there is increased security. 

But that's not the issue...

The issue is, when I saw the cop cars I automatically put both my hands at 11 & 1 on my steering wheel.

wtf

*****

About a month ago, in my hometown, where I have resided for 12 years, I realized I get REALLY NERVOUS every time I drive past a cop car. So of course, because I live in my head, I thought... it's me it's my problem it's my...whatever...

But then I thought... hold up... what if I were... Me... but White... would I still be so mistrustful... so PARANOID???...



I am a 52 year old health care professional. I have degrees from an Ivy League school. I have paid taxes since I was 16 years old. I drive a light blue Mini Cooper forgodssake. But I feel more unsafe in my hometown when I pass a police car than at ANY other time, whether driving or on foot. 

Are White Women who are, other than their 'race', just like me, nervous when they drive by a cop in their hometown? A hometown where they own property and pay taxes? A hometown where they love the Mountain and the River and Main St? A hometown where they wake up every morning, look out their bedroom bay window and think... oooh... so pretty...? The hometown where that, in most ways, they feel privileged (as in grateful) to live?

My answer is 'no'. I am not sure that a White Woman would have the same visceral reaction that I have. But like I said, I'm not sure. I haven't taken a poll or asked The Question. Maybe a lot more people are mistrustful or fearful of police than I am aware of. 

So, back when I had this realization... I asked Jack. Because my kids are my reality check. They have a completely different perspective from mine and are super savvy. And they are usually dead-on. But Jack's response was... well, yeah mom... of course... so do I... there's no way white women have the same response you do...

aack

Like I said, I had this conversation with Jack during the summer. He's 19 now, and had just finished his first year at a relatively exclusive expensive private liberal arts college near Albany. He's able to attend largely because he has a guaranteed merit scholarship covering half his tuition for the full four years. But after a few weeks of him being there I received a text saying "racism is alive and well". He excelled academically, and although he's aware he's really smart, he attributes his GPA to spending most of his time in the library because he doesn't want to fuck with those people

fuck with is current lingo for hang with

Mom, I never thought of myself as a background person, but I'm not at all interested in the social life there [at college]

*****

I never much second-guessed my decision to forego what's typically considered "quality" k-12 education for my kids (school district reputation/tax base) for diversity until Jack started his college career.

One of the reasons I fell in love with Beacon 12 years ago was the diversity. I chose to raise my kids in a socially, culturally, and ECONOMICALLY diverse community with an "ok" school district, rather than a largely wealthy community with "stellar" schools". I wanted my kids to grow up with the chance to learn that at our core we are more alike than different, regardless of the labels we carry. And I truly believe it was the right choice.

Plus we could afford to buy a house here.

*****


On the way up to drop him off 2 weeks ago, Jack told me about an encounter he had with his best college friend's older brother. The whole thing knocked him for a total loop and sounds like the most hurtful experience of racism he has had in his short "post racial" life. When introduced, his friend's brother looked at him and said "so, are you like one of the ones who is here to meet the quota? like... being Black got you in?"

are you fucking kidding me???

Jack, in a way that he definitely got from his dad or maybe my sister Halona, responded, " well... I have a 4.0 average... and I don't know anyone else who has that GPA... but it [being Black] sure helps with the ladies..."

to which this turd replied "yeah.. but... that's not REALLY a 4.0... your professors probably went easy on you so it would look good..."

Jack was devastated. He had a few choice words for the jerky brother and then walked out of the room. He and his best friend never talked about it, but he knew his friend was ashamed and embarrassed. His friend's mom is a pediatric nurse practitioner just like me. His dad is a nice guy. His friend is sweet and awesome. But the brother's words cut my boy to the quick and more than anything else he experienced made him want to run from that school.

*****

So... back to my issue with being in viewing range of cops in Beacon...

Today I took Ty for his learner's permit. As I said, cops were posted outside the high school. As I drove past them, my heart skipped, I suddenly felt like I had to pee and I automatically placed my hands on top of my steering wheel in plain sight. I talked to Ty about it, kind of hoping he'd shoot me down in his mom you're so old, you're so out of touch, you're so clueless kind of way.

No. Such. Luck.

...ummm... yeah mom... of course... how else are you supposed to feel...

double aack

And then I come home and check facebook, where my sister Melanie posted this link http://usuncut.com/black-lives-matter/gruesome-video-shows-tulsa-police-killing-unarmed-terence-crutcher-hands-air/


how else am I supposed to feel??? maybe like I'm gonna vomit...

what. the. fuck.

racism is alive and well








Your fairy is called Columbine Icedancer
She is a bone chilling bringer of justice for the vulnerable.
She lives in mushroom fields and quiet meadows.
She is only seen when the bees swarm and the crickets chirrup.
She wears lilac and purple like columbine flowers. She has icy blue butterfly wings.