Editor: White people overstepping their boundaries and taking liberties with crude comments, unwelcome touching and unwelcome attention is microaggression racism.

Not only does this happen to our students of color, it also occurs to our adult citizens. And since it’s happening in our schools, there is a very deeply rooted racism in our adult communities. Racism is taught at home, in our schools and institutions. It permeates the fabric of society. It’s deeply embedded in our everyday lives.

(Examples include) store detectives following my wife around the stores in Walnut Creek; a butcher at Lunardi’s in Pleasant Hill deciding it was ok to give his opinion on how Louisiana (she is from Louisiana) was populated with black prostitutes and derelicts from the slums of Paris; other women always asking how we prepare greens; and the really weird ones like a close family member asking if Carolyn and I plan on having children and “there is not enough white babies being born.”

Then there’s the misogynistic racist overstep white men do to black women like unsolicited attempts at some perceived compliment such as “I’ll go home now if you will come with me.” Sometimes we hear racist music from neighbors by Johnny Rebel. There are those who try to take over conversations by over talking to others. The mindless condescensions, ignoring my wife when she’s standing right next to me. They would rather speak to the white man (me) and ignore my wife. And when out doing public services, like fence painting projects, it seemed that all of her volunteer efforts were ignored. The fences she painted were repainted even though that wasn’t needed. Water brought to everyone except her. She had to ask directly. Any suggestion black folks make for just about anything are tacitly ignored.

These are examples of the softer daily microaggressions that occur to just us. The only way to overcome this is by having an open conversation with the white folks, and the white folks addressing their racism without fear and dealing with it through education and open discussion in an open controlled public forum.

Mike DuPray

Oakley

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