The Reality Of The World We Live In Is Giving Me Anxiety

One of the reasons I quit blogging when my child was born was the anxiety. I was seeing the world in a negative light and with the comments my blog received being downright racist and abusive, I just didn’t want to deal with it anymore. It was dehumanizing.

I’m noticing in the world with access to people’s real thoughts as they feel comfortable sharing them while hiding behind a computer screen; people are awful. The idea that people are inherently good is no longer a reality for me. Tied in with the 24 hour news cycle of constant negative information, especially for people of color, and the inability of Facebook and Twitter to keep racism, sexism, and downright abuse off of their platform, I get anxiety.

I’ve learned that as a black women, I am truly alone in this world. White people hate black people. Asian, Hispanic, and middle eastern people hate black people. They say we deserve to get shot. They celebrate our failures, and I’m learning black men don’t like black women.

I used to get annoyed when non black people in real life would share stories about how racist their families were and would want my reaction. Some kind of suffer porn as they shared these stories for no reason except to see my reaction, while not mentioning what they did to resolve the racism they saw firsthand. Because they probably didn’t do anything.

That is Facebook for me right now, except it’s just the whole world sharing awful things for no real reason. I’m guilty of this as well. Most of us are. We need to stop. It’s become too much.

I always knew this, but to be exposed to it on a 24/7 cycle is unnerving.

So I’m giving myself a challenge. An ode to self care. I’m going to leave facebook for two weeks. I’m going to step away from twitter and the news. I’m going to focus on ideas I have for my blog. I’m going to focus “fun things” like discussions about purses. I don’t want to hear anything about Trump, racism, or any other type of awful thing.

I realize it’s selfish and I should be aware of the world, but my problem is I’m too aware. I want to track how I feel about things with and without access to news. Will I still be uptight and anxious as I see once again people informing me my life has less value due to my skin color? Will I stop feeling helpless? These are things I need to learn and understand. I think stepping away from the 24 hour news cycle and politics on social media will give me somewhat of a breather from all the negative things.

Let’s hope anyway.

Explaining Racism In 2005

This post is a flashback from 2005.  That was SOOOOOO long ago!

Things have changed for the better (Yay same sex marriage!…for now), but racism is still here just lingering. 

Today at work, a co-worker was telling me that she doesn’t understand why black people don’t get over slavery. I was wondering what the hell she meant by that. She wanted me to be aware that slavery occurred in Africa by Africans. As if I didn’t learn about slavery at all. I asked her did that make slavery right here? Did that eradicate all wrongdoing in America because other black people did it? We could use that rationale with child prostitution in Asia, just because it is overlooked there, doesn’t mean it is ok to do in America!!!!

I then asked her if she thinks that is what black people are truly mad about? She thought it was. I had to explain to my white co-worker that slavery didn’t end racism, and legalized racism didn’t end until the 1960s (segregation, Jim Crow). I did this by explaining when my father went to college he couldn’t go to Texas A&M because they didn’t allow colored folk, instead he went to Prairie View A&M. I asked her was segregation and Jim Crow Laws ok? She said no. She did feel that she shouldn’t be persecuted because she wasn’t born in that time. I insisted I shouldn’t be persecuted either, it shouldn’t be assumed I am poor, uneducated, or treated differently because of perceptions white people have about blacks. Because many whites have these perceptions, they treat me differently, even though they might not outwardly hate blacks they perceive me as a “lesser person”. Case and point I had a woman with a degree in PE inform me of how the government works and how the states and federal government work together. I had to inform her I was probably well more aware of this than she was, my degree is in Public Administration. Nothing but government, stats, and accounting. Trust me I know how to budget a city, a state, and a federal agency. I didn’t need her help on the procedures of state and federal government. But obviously being black, I wouldn’t understand such complex things, like state rights. I need the PE girl to explain it to me.

I wonder if white people honestly think racism died because slavery and Jim Crow did. I asked my white reference, my husband, and he said no, but since it is obvious, a lot of white people think black people read too much into stuff. I personally think it has to do with the fact that black people always have to second guess actions by whites. Since it isn’t acceptable to be outwardly racist anymore, even though the feelings are there consciously or sub-consciously, it doesn’t mean they don’t exist and don’t manifest themselves in different ways. Instead of lynching people, you don’t promote qualified blacks into better paying jobs, instead you choose your white buddy, who might not have the experience, but looks like you. You justify anger towards blacks by saying we get jobs “handed to us” due to affirmative action, even though the biggest minority that “benefits” is white women (yes women, white, black, brown yellow, are minorities per the EEOC).

Then she had the audacity to compare her not being able to get married to her partner to being black in america. Again I had to remind her of one thing. My color can’t be hidden, and not that she should hide her sexual orientation, but she has a choice to let people know or not. I asked her when was the last time an apartment or home she was looking at became unavailable when the person renting or selling saw her in person, but on the phone a few hours before it was available. Or how security will follow me around in a store I supposedly don’t belong in. Or how whenever I get a traffic ticket, it takes three police cars to issue it, and it takes then ten minutes to run warrants based upon my driver’s license and vehicle, and since that isn’t good enough I need to give them a detailed history of the vehicle, such as where it is bought and how much I paid for it. Mind you I have never been to jail, nor do I have a criminal record, but I am treated like a criminal all the time, be it by police, a store salesperson, or just an old lady walking in the mall clutching her purse.

I think most people white, black, brown, yellow, are racist, but it doesn’t make it right, I just wish people would acknowledge their feelings so I know whether to avoid you like the plague, because I am honestly tired defending someone’s right to be pissed off, again be pissed off, not use color or lack there of as an excuse for their shortcomings.

 

Interracial Relationships In The Age of Trump

We’re living in some dark times here in America.  Black folks can’t even mow a lawn or swim in a pool without white people trying to have them thrown in jail.  The current vitriol and hate that permeates our politics have us looking sideways at folks.  I totally get it.   My husband is pretty convinced that if I were single now I probably wouldn’t date a white person and to be fair, I don’t know if I could date a white person in the age of Trump.  We have to look at this rationally though.

We have to remember:

#notallwhitepeople

There are a few ways to navigate interracial relationships and thrive in the relationship and dating world.

Determine what you want in a relationship.

You might be wanting nothing serious so that you are ok with dating a white guy without vetting him because you know good and well you don’t want a relationship with anyone.  He just might be cute. That’s ok.   If you are looking for something more serious, you might want to have some questions you need to ask to see if this would work out for you. The last thing you need is to deal with a man who is going to be ok with your future children being called racial slurs under the guise of building character.  Or not seeing the big deal with they are discriminated against.

Draw your line in the sand for what you are comfortable with dealing with.

For some reason in my pre-married life, I was a magnet for white republican men in khakis. That was practically all that approached me.   However, that was my line in the sand, even in the 1990s. No republicans. If they had an affinity for listening to Rush Limbaugh or thought InfoWars was a great source of unbiased information, I would run.  Same for if they enjoyed such things as Fox News and only Fox News.  Listen I don’t want to have to deal with listening to that nonsense, much less hear it parroted in my personal spaces.   It isn’t a matter of a difference of opinion to me, it’s a matter of my humanity and dignity.  I do not have time to spend my days in bed discussing why the false concept of black on black crime is not justification for cops getting away with the murder of black people or explaining that white nationalism is bad for America. I’ve got better things to do with my time.

Be upfront with what you want.

If you don’t feel comfortable at this time dating white men, it’s understandable and that’s ok.  If you want to continue to date black men exclusively, do so.  No one will guilt you for this. Don’t have folks guilting you for not wanting to date Richard Spencer’s Doppelganger.

In the same vein, ask those tough questions. What are your potential partner’s views on Black Lives Matter, immigration, on pay and housing inequality.  Ask these things early to get things out of the way so that you can rest easy no major bumps in the road will happen later on.

Realize interracial dating and relationships do not have to involve white people.  

White people can still be completely off the table if you just have trust issues.  That’s ok.  I get it, you see that red hat and you want to run.   You see the red hat has quiet ass friends and family that don’t check him on his racist nonsense.   You don’t have to deal with that.  There are Asian men, Hispanic men, middle eastern men, and all kinds of races of men that exist in this world.  Some of them are interested in dating black women.  Focus on them if you want to expand your dating pool.