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 it was okay to go visiting unless the man was there alone, because he would slit my throat with a razor.

I didn’t even know what that meant, but I knew I should be afraid.


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