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Teacher of black youth, ancestors slaverholders

Ernie Lee Savannah, GA Struggling with my whiteness and my student’s blackness until we connect. I am a good teacher and after a while I don’t color just students who want to learn. It is more of a socio-economic divide, but I will never know what it means to be black as my students will [...]

White is not a single race

Slaton Anthony Mount Vernon, IA My last ancestor came to America before 1800 all from England, France and Germany. My ancestors fought and died in almost every American war, I was raised in the Cookson Hills of rural Oklahoma and believed that I was part of the American white culture. While attending college in Oklahoma, [...]

From a white teenage girl’s perspective

Victoria N. Fortson, GA My ancestors came to America just like many others. Just because I am white, does not mean my family “owned” “slaves”. When an African American girl says to me “you’re so lucky to have that hair” or “I would pay a lot for some of your hair”, it makes me mad. [...]

Crossing the Racial Divide, Marietta, GA

One Church was founded by slave owners, the other by former slaves. On a recent cold, wet winter night their spiritual descendants crossed the divide that separated their ancestors and came together to share a meal, to talk, and to listen to a national journalist tell the story on conversations about race in her own [...]

White guilt defines my life relentlessly.

Virginia Berthy I come from the combination of an old Alabama-Mississippi family and an old Virginia Family. I do not to my knowledge have an ancestor that did not own slaves before it was outlawed. I am told in back rooms of random family discussion that my great-great-great grandfather was the first white sheriff of [...]