robinellen (robinellen) wrote,

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I can't pretend to know much about racism. I'm a white female living in a very white area of the country. When I was in high school, we had a few other races, but to be honest, I didn't really notice the color of my friends' skin. But I think I was just oblivious.

My husband is half Japanese, and he said he was teased by his friends throughout school. Granted, they were 'friends' and they were just kidding around. But he said it made him feel 'different' at a time in his life when he didn't want to be unique -- especially for a shallow reason like that.

My SIL is Korean, and she's seen a ton of racism. She and her parents used to work at the flea market, and she'd have people talk to her like she was stupid or deaf or non-English-speaking. And they had no problem making racial slurs right to her face.

When I first heard that, I thought she must be exaggerating -- then I realized how sheltered my life has been. To me, commenting on the color of one's skin or their cultural background is like laughing at them because they have red hair or blue eyes -- it's nonsensical. But for those who have experienced it, I have seen -- through my dh and sil -- how painful it can be.

It seems ridiculous to say, but I guess I will anyway -- all that matters is the 'color' of one's heart, its purity, its grace, its willingness to accept others. And the only way we can see the beauty within another is to open our own heart to them. *shrug*

My niece was born today -- she'll be half Korean, half American mutt...I hope she doesn't experience racism like her mom has, like her uncle did. But if she does -- or if my own children, a quarter Japanese, do -- then I hope they'll also see from their parents that life doesn't have to be about judgment and anger and insecurity...I hope I'll be a good enough parent to show love and acceptance and grace to my children every moment of the day. that's all I can really do.
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