No, sorry, you ARE a racist

Nicole Valenzi, New Smyrna Beach, FL. My experience with race only started really when I entered public school. Until then, I can count on one hand the number of non-white people I interacted with. My mother told me part of the reason she took us out of our sheltered private school was because I pointed […]

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“Flesh color crayon: now “peach.” Hope.

John Calvin Miller, Fairfield, IA. “Flesh” color crayon: institutionalized racism revealed These both relate to an incident at U-Tapao Thailand where I served as Race Relations OIC during the Vietnam war. I helped design an embroidered Brotherhood patch for sale to airmen. When it was first being made, I went to the tailor shop to […]

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Native Stand With Black Lives Matter

Stephanie Traversie-Baechler, Watertown, SD. Growing up in South Dakota, many experiences Native Americans have gone through are familiar to those that have been expressed by Blacks in this country. We, too, have endured racial profiling, high incarceration rates, unfair ticketing practices designed to provide financial gain to counties, and we have experienced deaths. I have […]

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I’ll experience this, hopefully they don’t.

Takiyah L., Oakland, CA. If all it takes for me is to take on the burdens of intersectionality, just so my brother and sister, and future generations of Black and Brown youth will not have to experience that, then I am all down for the cause. I would not want them to endure such things, […]

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White Privilege makes me very bitter

Jessica McMurtry, Collins, GA. I am white, yes, but it makes me very bitter when other white people refuse to see how being another “race” could affect their life. Empathy is not the same as not being prideful of your heritage. My ancestors were Irish, Scottish, and Native American- and I am supremely proud of […]

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I carry hope through young musicians

Virginia Jones, Danville, VA. I’m a 54 year old white lady living back in the south after 15 years away from home. Its not the same everywhere. I’ve been an RN in central Phoenix, a wife of a Vietnam Veteran who was terribly discriminated by his own country and I’m a mother of a blonde […]

No longer want to prove worth

Milicia, USA. Growing up I received the message that I had to be better than Whites. I didn’t want to embarrass my ethnic group, this I must strive to be better than “them”. I worked hard to prove that I was better. I’m an adult and must say that I don’t know what all of […]

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My beautiful black boys deserve HOPE!

Maria Roach Bowie, MD My children are too young to understand racism. They see people in three categories: family, friends, neighbors. But I see the moms who fearfully pull their children off the playground when my family arrives. There are good people and bad. Judge by actions, not by skin color!

No, I’m not like Lucy Liu.

Clare Chun, Seattle, WA. I’m an aspiring actress and filmmaker. Whenever I share this with others, every so often I get hit with, “Oh like that Lucy Liu girl!” First off, I am Korean American and she is Chinese American, secondly, we don’t look or act anything alike. Yes, as shocking as this sounds, we […]

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Golden rule rules all equally.

Matthew Richard Rosu, Riverton, UT. I feel that all people are born colorblind, and if we just treat everyone by the golden rule, then there would be a lot less hate in our Nation, and around the world. That may be pie in the sky thinking, but we can always hope.

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Lost culture, lost opportunities, lost hope.

Marvin Hardy, Ferguson, MO. Born in and raised in Saint Louis, it’s amazing how much an African-American male has to give to make a success of himself. From a early age in the 80’s, I was told never to travel alone south of Interstate 64. This was the barrier that separated predominantly poor AA’s from […]

Relief, family pride, and then hope

Joy Los Angeles, CA Looking into my family history, at first I found relief at finding no record of slave ownership, even among ancestors in the South. Was it just because they could not afford to buy slaves? But then I found a transcript of a sermon my great-great grandmother’s brother gave at a church […]

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Sharon Neumane, Mehoopany, PA. Growing up in the 60’s and 70’s I truly believed that we had moved beyond racial conflicts. My greatest heroes, my most beloved singers and song writers, actors, activists and poets are people who’s skin is a different color than mine. I have never in my life filled out a race […]

Be the change (and) ignite the possibilities!

Betruth, St.Paul, MN. We need to have so much hope for those who choose to see the love and peace in the world. While also seeing all the perspectives and opinions of others. Our cultural differences can lead us a stray from all the facts. I will not be burdened by the pigmentation of my […]

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The culmination of hate and hope.

Kimberly, Pittsfield, MA. My father, whom I don’t know, is black and my mother is white. I was raised in a White, Irish family. Growing up, no one in my family looked like me, but I never noticed until ‘Roots’ premiered on TV. I had my son with a white man, so he is one […]

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Perception equals reality – OPEN YOUR EYES!

Kathy Devine-Henry, Smyrna, DE. Prior to my twenty-seventh birthday, my eyes were not completely open. Up until this point I believed that Martin Luther King Jr. had solved all the race issues in our country and equality for all was the law of the land. Then I began teaching at a Juvenile Detention Center in […]

No hope or faith left now.

Tracey Hughes, Kansas City, MO. The unofficial trial of Michael Brown (also known as the statement from Prosecutor McCullough) makes it official in my mind. America is nowhere near ready to make significant, lasting change when it comes to confronting racism, privilege, and the lack of equality in justice for ALL if its citizens. I […]

It has given me such hope

Malcolm Long Corley New York City, NY Brooklyn It is amazing how people lived and fought during these times. Seeing the black and white pictures almost gives the viewer the same experiences of whats happening in the pictures.

It embodies America’s hope and tragedy

Nick Rabkin Chicago, IL So much of who I am is comes from my sense that the fight for civil rights is really the fight for the real American dream. I was active in the campaign to elect Harold Washington mayor of Chicago, and I worked in his administration. Harold!

Anger sadness hope live inside me

Susan Riederer Boulder, CO I was a teenager during the 60’s and feel such sadness at remembering what occurred in my youth as a white midwestern girl. I remember the race riots in Kansas City where I lived and my parents picking me up in downtown as opposed to taking the city bus home because […]

Am I racist? I hope not.

James T. Barker Kansas City, MO I occasionally have racist thoughts (I would prefer to say prejudicial thoughts), especially when I get angry. Although I do not act on them, it bothers me greatly that I have these thoughts.

Sure, but would you marry one?

Tom Bethesda, MD When my (white) mother worked at NAACP in the 60’s my Dad infamously questioned her sincerity. Mom died a decade ago. Dad spent last weekend walking precincts for Obama in NH. Hope and change indeed.

White guilt smothers hopes of authenticity.

Cindy Castevens Winston Salem, NC I’m white, and feel ashamed about my color every time I’m around black folks whom I don’t know. I think of all my ancestors and my race did to Blacks, and I’m ashamed and horrified. This guilt makes it hard for me to just be myself around Black people most […]