What white neighborhood has MLK high?

Karen Gold, Atlanta, GA. Collected during: Six Word Stories on Education Last fall, ProPublica and The Race Card Project teamed up with two Tuscaloosa, Ala., high schools — one integrated, one almost entirely black — to tell the story of resegregation in the South. I am a 25 year veteran teacher in metro Atlanta GA […]

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Dear Ebenezer Baptist: I still cringe

Elizabeth Rodriguiz, Ypsilanti, MI. In the early 2000s I tagged along with my husband to his professional society meeting in Atlanta. While he went to lectures, I explored the city. I took the Metro to the stop nearest Ebenezer Baptist Church and walked through the neighborhood to get there. At the church, I actually asked […]

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What is, uhmm, race is uhmm…

Mahlon Gumbs, Atlanta, GA. What is uhmm… Race is uhmm… The thin line that Blinds us, Confines us, Keeps us at home base. If we cross that line It’s a crime, No matter the time; Society will put us back in our place. But what is uhmm… Race is uhmm… The thing about which we […]

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Dance is color blind universal language

Brian Hayes, Atlanta, GA. I got into Salsa dancing because I wanted to try something new. I never knew it would open my eyes and allow me to meet people I never would have interacted with before. Upon doing that, I realize that we are much more a like than different. I found my love […]

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Emanicipation is still just a word

Winfrey Young, Atlanta, GA. Emancipation did not reinstate self-esteem, justice, dignity or reality. Freed slaves were not endowed with freedom to love or with pride of self. There was no one to help us heal. We cannot move toward each other if our self-image and ideals are shackled—and we continue to wallow in the sicknesses […]

What are you? The ubiquitous question.

Laura Mariko Cheifetz Atlanta, GA I call myself hapa yonsei. I’m biracial white Jewish and Japanese American, fourth generation on both sides. However, there are two assumptions that I run into all the time. First, “what are you?” People want to know my ethnic background (not racial… that doesn’t satisfy their intrusive curiosity), but they […]

Bird Watching: A Metaphor on Race

Keenan Chandler, Atlanta, GA. There are all sorts of birds in the world: big birds, small birds, flightless birds, aquatic birds, birds with wondrously colorful plumage and those with subtle, dull feathers. If we want to appreciate them equally, do we pretend not to see their differences? Do we say the pigeon is the same […]

Color Defined, Now Mixing is Fixing

Doug Shipman, Atlanta, GA. The demographic changes seen in the census are at a turning point– race has to change because the categories are rapidly falling with intermarriage, internationalization and the rise of majority-minority in America.

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When will the next one go

David Rotenstein, Atlanta, GA. In April 2012, I sat in an elderly African American woman’s Decatur, Ga.,dining room with a digital recorder asking her questions about gentrification in her neighborhood. For more than a decade, developers have been buying small homes and tearing them down to build large new homes some people call “McMansions.” The […]

“Black Only” Events perpetuate the segregation

Giovanna, Atlanta, GA. I am a second generation American Jew (meaning none of my family members ever owned another human being) I was raised to treat everyone for who they are – not outward appearance – I just moved to the south and have experienced something entirely different. In a city full of educated, eloquent […]

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Sicilian urged to embrace black roots

Charles Aloisio, Atlanta, GA. An African-American friend at the Y has encouraged me to get in touch with my African roots since I’m Sicilian Italian as well as Neopolitan. I have often thought of my roots since Sicily was occupied by the Moors for several centuries.

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Really? But you don’t LOOK Brazilian…

Tessa Voget, Atlanta, GA. To say I have a complex about how pale I am is putting it mildly. I vacillate between wishing I were more golden, to meet Americans’ (and even my own family’s) expectations — and getting super defensive, layering on the SPF while feeling guilty about the privileges porcelain skin bestows upon […]

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You black? Passe blanc. No, Creole.

August A. Goins Jr., Atlanta, GA. Growing up as a light skin black man of creole decent, people assume I want to be white. Not because of something I said or did, but based solely on my skin color. As if I had a choice of my skin color. I’m proud of who I am, […]

Black husband not “stolen” from you

Amanda Weller, Atlanta, GA. I’m an army brat, a former soldier, and an army wife. Of course I notice differences in skin color and culture (I’m not blind, or stupid); they simply take a back seat to the most important color in my life, a shared color: green. When I met my husband at the […]

A child, called a white pig.

M. Landrum Atlanta, GA I grew up poor in a mixed neighborhood in south Atlanta. My two best friends were white and black, and for the most part we all got along. One day my white friend was angry and called my black friend a n*****, and even though I’d never heard the word I […]

But where are YOUR PEOPLE from?

Reed Atlanta, GA “Where is your family from? No, but where are YOUR PEOPLE from? I mean, what is your HERITAGE? Like, your ancestors. I mean … where do your features come from?” That was one of the more polite conversations that someone has initiated about by race. Although I was raised white and generally […]

Economic Independence Key To Black Freedom

Merlin Gentry Atlanta, GA Blacks can learn from Jews.You get your revenge by getting rich and making hiring decisions. When you’re collectively wealthy, you can influence local policies to your advantage. That’s just how the world works. How do you get rich? By owning your own businesses, not by working for others. How do you […]

I Am Not But I Am

Alexis S Atlanta, GA As we stepped on to the elevator accompanying a father and his two girls. She said “Look daddy black people”, and he turned redder than a ripe tomato and said, “That’s right honey, yellow, tan, gold, and brown people.” It was shocking to my family in hers, the fact that she […]

But Elizabeth, you’re not really black…

Elizabeth D Atlanta, GA But I’m sure not white either. You think because I speak a certain way and dress a certain way, because I don’t fit your stereotypes, I’m not ‘black’ enough? Sorry if I shatter your preconceived notions, but as always I’m just being myself.

Still Lifting the Veil of Ignorance

George Greene Atlanta, GA In Tuscaloosa and places like it across the resegregating South, we are being forced to fight a battle that seemingly cannot be won. Upward mobility in Tuscaloosa has been, and will continue to be halted because of closeted, good-ol-boy dealings that ruin the future of thousands of people. As a graduate […]

Affirmative action has created stagnant society.

Frans Susan (near) Atlanta, GA Political correctness and affirmative action are the most destructive forces of the past 60 years! We have stupid, obtuse white liberals and corrupt government policies &; politicians to thank for the destruction of a once vibrant &; viable society.

Why can’t we have new books?

Tamika Brown Atlanta, GA Race and socioeconomic status are nearly inseparable. And nowhere can this be seen more clearly than in American classrooms. Education has become a battle between those who have, and those who have not.

Unique and enriching experience shaped me!

Pamela Payne Foster Tuscaloosa, AL I entered high school in 1972 and was part of an integration experiment in Atlanta GA called the Minority to Majority program where I was bussed out of my neighborhood school which was 100% Black to a neighborhood school 20 miles away which was mainly White/Jewish. Other Black children all […]

White guilt is luxury: do something

Ann Claycombe Atlanta, GA I am a middle-aged white woman working at Georgia State University, where no race is in the majority. Instead, what I see is poor students of every color – the average household income of our students is $25,000 a year. And what I’ve learned is they don’t need my pity or […]

African-American is more than color.

Carmela Atlanta, GA I am significantly more than the color of my skin. I am the culture of my people and I am amazing. Get to know me and my color and you will be amazed. If not, I can continue to be amazing without you. I realize I have nothing to prove to anybody […]

…dreamed of being Nino Brown’s accountant.

Styron Pennywell Atlanta, GA After watching New Jack City, I dreamed of being Nino Brown’s accountant. He was the only respectable brown face that didn’t have to shoot anybody. I was eleven and gang-banging was on the rise in the early 90’s, spreading it’s way through the deep south, black boys with bravado, eyes sparkling […]

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You’re not white, What are you?

Sheena Biggerstaff Atlanta, GA I get this statement/question combo all the time. It’s amazing how many different races I’ve been grouped into by people trying to find an answer. The conversation always ends the same. Sorry, I don’t know, I was adopted.

Teaching my kids to see people.

Mike L. Atlanta, GA I grew up in Atlanta GA during the 60’s. While I loved my grandparents I couldn’t understand why they thought the ice cream truck vendor was such a “nasty”, “dirty” and “diseased” man! “Mr. Jones” (as he politely asked us to call him) always had a smile on his face and […]

“Content of character is NOT color-blindness.”

Dexter H. Bridgeman Atlanta, GA In his iconic “I Have A Dream” speech, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. stated the following: “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their […]

African Americans were slave owners too.

Leonard Henry Atlanta, GA Check out this scholarly book, Black Slaveowners: Free black Slave Masters in South Carolina, 1790-1860, by Larry Koger ISBN 0-89950-160-5. Also read the book Two Princes of Calibar. This is a true history of two West African brothers who were sold into slavery, won their freedom in the courts and went […]

Sugar’s will: $500/acre, $1500/slave

Carolyn B. Smith Atlanta, GA Shugan Ransome Davis (“Sugar”) was my great great great grandfather. He was from Halifax, NC but moved in 1824 to Alabama and established a plantation in Suggsville. His will is from 1857. When I saw it, I was struck by the value of an adult male slave when compared to […]

Pale faced; I must be guilty

Katherine Atlanta, GA I am not responsible for the actions of people one hundred and fifty years ago who enslaved an entire race. The institution of slavery is a horrific part of American History, and it was a heinous crime against African Americans. Because of that institution, there is racism alive and around still and […]

Words are taken out of context.

Anonymous Atlanta, GA Sometimes when people write articles about race, they tend to take things out of context and just take a blurb to make people outraged, when really the person was lecturing about a topic or was explaining something.

SUBWAY: Black man saved my ass.

Michael Leibowitz Atlanta, GA I challenged two young men that were harassing a young girl. They drew knives. A large man behind me said that if they came closer (to me), he’d shove the knives down their throats.

A Mississippi secret – not “accidental drowning.”

David Morath Wrightsville, PA On August 14, 1973 three black children from Atlanta, GA drowned in Waveland, Mississippi. Eyewitnesses reported that the children had been harassed by white boaters, The coroner’s jury closed the case without investigation the following day. Because of Jim Crow mortuary policies, locating a funeral director who would deal with African-Americans […]

Stop Government Funded Hate Whitey Classes!

Steven Bryan Atlanta, GA I’ve been pushing Taxpayer funded school voucher programs (K-12) for over 20 years. Public Schools are rewarded for doing a pathetic job educating our children; but, they do a great job spreading Hate. This has been going on since the 40s—Read: ‘Autobiography of Malcolm X’ Or ask Blacks who’ve taken ‘Black […]

Black men should fear black men

Mark Foster Atlanta, GA How can one seriously suggest the Zimmerman-Martin story emblematic of the black male experience while ignoring the predatory culture of black against black in neighborhoods thoughout our Country.

I wish the voice would stop.

Al Atlanta, GA I was born 51 years ago. I grew up with a father who would definitely be considered racist today, but was probably just typical blue collar in those days – kind of an Archie Bunker figure. I heard the N word at least a dozen times a week. Fast forward to my […]

Why do I avoid discussing race?

T. Brodnax Atlanta, GA Two words in my six could easily be changed: “I” to “we” and “avoid” to “fear”. The “I” is obviously more personal, the “we” more descriptive of the world in which I think we live.

When checking “white,” I am diminished.

Adelia Dozier Atlanta, GA Every time I have to check my race as “white” or “Caucasian” my stomach turns and I feel diminished. I search all boxes to see if there is a better representative word. I am more than “white” or Caucasian. I am a composite of those whose lives I have shared. Born […]

My skin does not define me.

Marcus Atlanta, GA Born of African American parents, raised by my African American mother and Irish-German (adopted) father. Big brother to a bi-racial sister and my cousins are white, Asian and Latino.

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Educated. Black strangers scare me still.

Samantha Murphey, Submitted via: Scarlett called Scout. Read more about this essay: The Race Card Project http://www.scarlettcalledscout.com/2013/03/14/the-race-card-project/ Trent and I talk and read about race a lot. Atlanta is a minority majority city with a complicated history of racial tensions and triumphs that bleed into the present. Alone, moving here might have been enough to […]

Black people hate black people, too.

Juluis Youngerford, Atlanta, GA. Nobody can tell the truth about race, that is, what they think about their own race or other races, because nobody makes nice distinctions between race and class, or between the different types of racial prejudice and hatred, so they can’t say just what they don’t like about others, and they […]