Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Peak Pretend Racism Not Yet Reached

The Unintentional Racism Found in Traffic Signals...

But what about the far more subtle streams of everyday racism that course through our homes, our workplaces, and the outside world? These instances may be far subtler than a mascot or an offensive term, but are no less pervasive — and no less deserving of cultural reckoning.

For me, this reckoning begins with traffic signals.

A few months back, before Covid-19 kept us in our homes and George Floyd made us take to the streets, I was walking with a friend, her daughter, and my twin sons. My friend is White and I’m not — something I’d never given a second thought until we reached a crosswalk. “Remember, honey,” she said to her daughter as we waited for the light to turn green, “we need to wait for the little White man to appear before we can cross the street.”

I realize that White people like to exert control over nearly everything everyone does, I thought, but since when did this literally include trying to cross the street?

I am waiting for Crayola to replace all those segregated colors with just gray-brown.

By the end, he finally realizes it is about visibility, but this much energy concerned about this "racism" is the sign of a person with serious emotional problems: a progressive.


  1. Kitchen privilege. I surveyed the handles of all the oversized utensils (tongs, ladles, cooking spoons, etc.) and diversity factor seems OK. We lost the white refrigerator some time ago and replaced it with a stainless steel one, thinking that was the proper and socially demanded thing to do, but I worry that it feeds a superiority characteristic in its reflection of myself when I stand in front of it. The cabinet with plates, cups, saucers, and bowls, is horrendously monochromatic. I am so ashamed -- I may prostrate myself on the front lawn and ask for forgiveness. Honestly, I tried to replace it all with paper plates, but...

  2. And if the colors were reversed, they would bitch about a black man running through a white world.