Dad said America is not ready.

Michael l Koetje, Vashon, WA. I grew up in a sheltered deeply religious community. Just white folks. When an older friend went away to college and brought a black guy home in the Mid-60’s, those were my Father’s words about the children they might have. I said America needs to be ready. I believed what […]

golden babies


Karen Dahn, Athens, OH. I went to Liberia as a Peace Corps Volunteer right out of college in the late 60’s, after having grown up in Montana and gone to school in Colorado with very little exposure to non white people. Being in Africa was a life changing experience. I did not intend to do […]


Built on love but not trust.

Jaylene Ortiz, Harrisburg, PA. America is built off of a foundation of love, but where is the trust? How much can we trust each other? The government? The people sent to help us? Who do you trust with your life? Can you think of anyone? Trust is a big part of America and human beings […]

It is not a heritage thing

Sara Lachance, Springdale, AR. Seeing Confederate flags on the back of trucks and outside people’s houses makes my stomach hurt. I once encountered a person with the confederate flag on their sunglasses right between the lens, like it was staring me down. I am forced to be associated with those people because A. I am […]


Obsessed much with race, America?

Atong Majok, Salt Lake City, UT. Being from Sudan, a country with a seemingly-infinite number of spoken languages and dialects, I still find it baffling that many white Americans think they can “know” something about a person merely by looking at their skin tone…

My friend says I’m messed up

Hemma Jari, UK. There are less mixed race kids in the UK than in America. Although I live in Manchester, which is (outside of London) probably the most multi-ethnic city in the UK, I’m still one of the few mixed race kids in my year. People here have a tendency to ‘stick to what they […]


People aren’t ready to face Race

Yusuf Wyatt, Atlanta, GA. The history of race in America is a topic that makes many people uncomfortable because it’s a perpetual issue and not one that dishonest or politically correct speech will make any better. If we don’t understand what racism really is, there can be no honest dialogue.

No one believes I am black

Sozit Mohamed, Sunnyvale, CA. Being Ethiopian with Arab heritage in my family, most do not believe I’m black/African. Also, being black and muslim, seems to be the worst thing you can be in America right now.


Own history, own America, our turn.

Keith Stokes, Newport, RI. Persons of African heritage have been far too long a background to much of American history. The more we can learn and share about our important contributions to American history, the more we as a people will be able to share in the full fruits of living and prospering in America.


America’s Dominant Race is HUMAN Race

Sarah Sanchez, Midvale, UT. I am Hispanic, black and European but you couldn’t tell by looking at me and I am okay with that. I believe that there may always be a larger number of a particular race through out America but that does not make them the majority nor minority. I I feel that […]

Racial divisions are America’s Achilles heel.

Shirley Hicks, Birmingham, AL. When I came to the United States four years ago, one of the first things I noticed was the racial divides. At home, it’s language and class. Here, it’s race, class and access to power. Here in the South, it’s been especially important to know and understand that history in order […]

America must pay retribution for slavery

Craig, Spain. I feel that until Black America is united with White America on all levels, inequality will be the cause of crime, murder and poverty throughout America. Until America faces its crime for slavery and all that has happened since, the problem will persist. This “retribution” will be financial payment, similar to how Germany […]

White girl in America. Can’t complain.

Alice O’Neill, Boston, MA. People get the impression that you can’t have anything wrong with your life if you’re white, but there are plenty of things that anyone can experience regardless of race. You don’t know my experiences, you know the color of my skin.

In America it’s always about race.

Yvonne Torrance, Philadelphia, PA. People who sat the shooting of Michael Brown is not about race are kidding themselves. If a Black officer had shot an unarmed white kid would he be sitting at home still collecting his paycheck?

Racists Are Not Always Bad People

Michael Havis, Brooklyn, NY. I think the word racism no longer defines the conversation we should be having. The image of racism in America is of the KKK or southern slave owners with whips. Being racist and being a good person are not mutually exclusive. Racism today isn’t being a part of lynch mobs or […]


Father, Husband, Soldier, Taxpayer, Voter, Mentor.

M. Peek Fitzgerald, Harrisburg, PA. In my 53 years of life I feel that I must carry something like this every time I leave my home. This is not the America I fought for. Not the America that I have to explain differences to my children. I’m an American too and I feel like a […]

Racism in America: Just Undo It.

Fred Kester, East Lansing, MI. We may not be personally responsible for the injustices of the past, but we are still responsible for creating a society where there are opportunities for all and where justice prevails.

Child Immigrant, Grown Defender of America

Ronnie Annapolis, MD The image of a child immigrant, who grew up to serve in the U.S. military is a bit cliche these days, especially after more than a decade of conflict. However, there is nothing cliche about an immigrant wanting to defend his adopted nation and his fellow Americans (both fellow immigrants and native […]

Tired of Asians being a minority

Jaimie Nguyen San Jose, CA There are not much Asians in the media, not many Asians exposed in the light. Also, it saddens me how narrow-minded this society is. When there is a foreigner in America of a European descent, we say this person is “exotic”, “sexy”, “edgy”. Then, if there is a foreigner in […]

I’m a white woman in America

Arianna Mariotti Seaside, CA I am white. I am a woman. I am part of the upper middle class. I grew up in Orange County, California. I am a student in college. I am discriminated against because I “have it easy.” But the fact of the matter is, I don’t see color or class or […]

Black in America, white in Africa

Dauda Ladipo Nigeria Grew up and live in both the US and Nigeria. Because of my mixed racial heritage I got used to being viewed as belonging to the local racial minority in both places, even though I didn’t identify culturally with that group. Whereas, the half of me that was local was in fact […]

Speak English We Are In America

Amanda Denise Ballantyne New York City, NY The Bronx I was at a dinner when a group ,mid 60s/early70s (age), of Caucasians were eating their sunday breakfast discussing an event. I specifically heard a section of the conversation, “I can’t stand moments like that. We are in America, speak English we are in America.” It […]

Stop and see Race in America

Josie Watanabe Seattle, WA Too many people believe that our work is done. Or why do we still need affirmative action? I wish for everyone to stop, listen and look around so that we can really take a closer look at race relations in our country and find real ways we can keep moving forward […]

This question shouldn’t even be there.

Samantha D. Los Angeles, CA I’m from Eastern Europe and I find America’s racial diversity very interesting and exciting. That being said America is entirely too focused on the label of race – from job applications, college applications, scholarships, to nearly every government form. The principle of the question really bothers me and I usually […]

I am a happy, Latina Woman

Gabriela Rivero Oakland, CA What’s it like being a Latina living the United States? It’s not always the most easiest thing. You have people coming up to you asking you if you can speak English. “Of course I can” I think to myself. What kind country do we will in where people are being judged […]

The more denial, the more racism.

Mary Clark Baltimore, MD People who feel that the current state of race relations are not that damaging/not that big of a deal/brought on by deserving behavior of minorities need to make conscious efforts to become aware of what perpetuates racism and race division in our society and the very large part that privilege plays […]

White American: No Culture or Identity

Lance Remington Stuart Rood Redlands, CA Sometimes I feel like I have no identity. White american? what is that? Irish? German? Dutch? Danish? I want to be able to identify with those around me. I love learning about people. Their heritage, traditions and culture. By knowing someones race or races I can then proceed to […]

My generation should know better

Ann Marie USA I didn’t understand how much racism still existed in America until I moved to Missouri for college. As a white female, second year college student and only 19 years old, I am absolutely disgusted with the racial slurs I still hear today. Coming from San Diego, I grew up with Latino friends […]

Black in this world is a death sentence

Sylvia D. Stevenson Thornton, CO Will all black-African Americans ever be given any breaks? Foreigners get better treatment in America than Blacks. Jews are looked at because of the holocaust. Blacks were kidnaped and brought here, but we get no retribution for being treated as animals. Even today, I tried to purchase a condo on […]


Can Anyone Believe I Love Everyone?

Lisa Johnson, Holden, MO. I am, unfortunately, from very rural America. There was a short period in my life (approximately 1/4 of it) that was lived in larger areas where I got to know various people. My most favorite experiences were the multicultural atmosphere of the Modern Languages and Literatures Department of a college I […]

Never too old to be profiled

Ollie Daniels Pembroke Pines, FL I am a sixty-nine year old black college professor with all white hair. From time-to-time I am stopped by police officers and questioned. It’s never about speeding, but rather it’s about, “Is this car yours?” I drive, what I call, a rather “high-end” car and I believe that they think […]

We don’t want your “White” America

Joel Wasinger Wylie, TX By all appearances, I’m “white” and I was raised in white middle class America. My biological father was Hispanic (my relatives on that side are mostly pale, like me). My dad, the man who raised me, is part Native American. My wife’s son–now my son–is black, technically mixed race. And there’s […]

In America, we use turn signals.

Caitilin Weber Los Gatos, CA I was raised in Alabama and moved to California in my mid-30’s. Alabama was at the time a “bi-cultural” society (as I like to call it). We had black and we had white. There were very few people of Asian or Hispanic descent in the Alabama I knew. So, when […]


Oreos. Shouldn’t they be America’s favorite?

Ashley Pettiford, Cincinnati, OH. I am black white, and Hispanic. I’ve had some mishaps from being what I am and it’s kind of ridiculous. People need to stop worrying about me being three different races and instead putting more energy into something that could be more beneficial! Boom Suckka!

Death of the West, sunsetting superpower.

Jay San Fransisco, CA I don’t get all this lets celebrate diversity stuff and the browning of America. Fact is, most areas with the demographics that are the future of America have high crime rates, high school drop out rates, mostly single parent families that are on public assistance, etc… etc… why would white America […]

It sucks being black in America

Charles Long Birmingham, AL Submitted via: NPR’s Talk of the Nation I am a 52 year old white man from Birmingham, Al. I had the opportunity to meet Michele at the 16th Street Baptist Church when she was promoting her book “The Grace of Silence”. The more I learn about life in America for African […]