Perceptions of race…change….over time…

M’Karyl Gaynor, Decatur, GA. I am 52 years old and I am from the Midwest (Rockford, IL) and while there was not an absence of racism per se…my friends and I were fortunate enough to grow up in a community where our families, communities and educational experiences allowed us to experience integration at its best…I […]

So wish it didn’t matter still.

Sharla Yeutsy Urbandale, IA I’m a white 73 year old grandmother of seven who has always lived in the midwest. I am grateful that I grew up in a family that judged people by the “content of their character” I rejoiced when we elected Barak Obama two times as our president and am so pained […]

Passing under streetlights… shouldn’t we nod?

Tom Capuano Kirksville, MO In the Midwest, in small and mid-sized towns at least, people who are strangers to each other sometimes acknowledge each other with a nod, at the very least, when passing by each other, at least during the day. Sometimes even a hello. Maybe not all the time, maybe not even most […]

What if I were born black?

Harriett Fargnoli Rockville Centre, NY It’s so hard some days to make sense of anything. Humanity, not color, should define us. I was born in the Midwest to non-racist parents. I moved East where everything is ethnic.

Aggressive homogeneity hurts white folks too.

Erika Chester South Korea I’m an American living in South Korea, married to an American soldier stationed here. I grew up in what I recently articulated as aggressively homogeneous culture in the Midwest. Fortuitously, I became friends with one of the very, very few students of color in my high school. Her friendship has done […]

Michigan, 1970: where are your horns?

BJ Diamond West Hartford, CT Just married, moved from East Coast to Midwest, found a job as an urban planner for the county. First woman in a professional position at the agency. The other women were administrative staff. I was always asked to fill in for them if they were short-handed (e.g., please get the […]

Mother’s warnings at four, instilled racism.

Carmen Davis Portland, OR I was a very young child from the Midwest traveling with my mother by train to Detroit in the 1940’s. There was an African American couple on the train with a wonderfully packed picnic basket. As a very gregarious child I was eager to explore the car. My mother told me […]