Canyon Lake, CA.
I was raised in rural Minnesota prior to sixth grade and by then had moved to Minneapolis. My first exposure to differences in “”Race”” was in High School and I never had any real understanding of why there were any significant tensions about who was what color. I felt very good about the PEOPLE I went to class with, played sports with and socialized with. I enjoyed the diversity. My chosen crowd during those years and beyond has been a mix of “”Races””.
I understand “”Racism”” has had a hold on our culture since before the days of “”Cowboys and Indians”” as depicted in “”Chief Joseph – I will run no more forever””. It was the first movie I ever cried watching at the age of 10. Fortunately I had been sheltered to that point from any such injustice in action. I was crushed that anything like that could happen, much less be orchestrated by our own government.
While an eighth grader attending wrestling practice in the same school I would eventually go to High School in I looked through the gymnasium doors and witnessed a Basketball game turn into a “”Race Riot””. It was scary and yet I was perplexed – Why did this occur? What was the history between these teams, schools, parents, kids?
I truly see “”Racism”” as a “”cop out”” for those who have not tried to reason it’s ugly uselessness away or who have been raised to hate for no legitimate reason. It is often used as an excuse to have an end justified by it’s means. Sometimes I think cultures can become less than helpful in bridging differences or in fostering individual personal success, but I also know that learned behavior can be changed.
I am a 48 year old conservative white Christian male and I still call my best friend from High Schools mother “”Mom””. They both happen to be African American but I only see people I love when I look at them. God made us all and if He loves us we should too!