For Me, Racism Started at Home

warmselfportraitOct2014Sarah S.,
Washington, DC.

My Puerto Rican grandmother used to call me “muchacha fea,” while calling my dark-haired, dark-eyed, darker-skinned, curly-haired sisters, “muchacha linda.” That woman treated me like Cinderella. When we were kids, one of my sisters took my grandmother’s cues, and decided to torment me by saying that I was adopted (I wasn’t), because I didn’t look like them. I learned at a very young age, and in my own family’s home, that looking “white” was not always a “privilege.” As painful as those early experiences were, they taught me EMPATHY. What brought me here today was hearing about the woman in Lilburn GA, the principal of the TNT Academy, who said, “look who’s leaving–all the black people.” She “apologized” (snort!) by basically saying, “the devil made me do it.” I really wish I could slap that (woman) up one side and down the other.My empathy does not extend to stupid people.


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