[This is closed to comments for a reason. Kindly stop sending me hateful e-mails similar to the one published below.]
Some people” de-friended” me for joining a Michael Jackson memorial club and for being sick and tired of the racist and homophobic jokes that unfortunately did not die with him. Now a friend of mine has been ganged-up on for being a White person who disagrees with the “playing the race card” talk swirling around the whirlpool of ugly damned old fashioned racially-abusive police brutality muck and mire following Professor Gates’ arrest in his Cambridge home. Here in my home state. I mentioned to a friend this afternoon that despite being as non-thuggish as they come, I still felt compelled to cross the street in Boston today because the transit police were hanging around outside of a T station I was passing, and I didn’t want any problems. That is not an unusual feeling/action for me.
I once called Somerville police at around 2am because my roommate’s girlfriend physically attacked me after I asked (them) to stop making noise outside of my room when there were three other rooms they could drink in. The actual attack came after she followed me to the bathroom and stood kicking the door while I used the facilities. The police showed up, separated us three for questioning (the roommate and his girlfriend taken together to be questioned, mind you, not just the non-roommate who attacked me in my own home); then they refused to write a report and told me I had to go to the station the next day to do so (“It’s only a misdemeanor.”) They left, leaving the attacker who didn’t live there to sit around getting drunker. This was after months of racist monkey cartoons quoting me and verbal threats about how I’d better get in line like the two other (non-Black) female roommates. I was labeled all kinds of freaky for not cowering in my room from the bullies like the others. This is a prime example of two major bigotries that persist in this country: women who disobey male authority are not natural; Black people who stick up for ourselves are uppity.
Can you imagine if I’d attacked a White woman in her house in a drunken rage that I would have been anything other than cuffed and hauled off? If so, you are seriously naive about the relationship between White cops and Black citizens at least in Greater Boston, if not the US in general. Somerville is one town over from Cambridge. I’ve stopped going to several writers’ groups over the past few years because of the racially-abusive hostility that persists. When I’ve spoken up about it in a subtle or direct manner, I’ve been confronted with increased hostility or implied assertions that I am jealous of the hateful White women who routinely verbally assault me with their violently racist beliefs. Or someone figuratively spits in my face with belittling comments such as “race shouldn’t matter” etc.
To the racially clueless: This is America. “Race shouldn’t/doesn’t matter” is offensive and stupid. It loosely translates to us “paranoid” Black people as: Racism doesn’t matter to me because I am a bigger person than you, more civilized, mature, more refined…. Don’t mention it around me, or I will be forced to cut you off mid-sentence to defend racist White people I’ve never even met. You do not matter. Kindly shut up or go away. The ignorance of [racially-insensitive White] people about that which we have to deal with just to go where they go or do what they do is vast. Grow up. Get a clue. We are not imagining or exaggerating!