I wouldn't go so far as to say that my former classmate and I were close friends back in high school, but it was cordial. We reconnected a few years ago on Facebook. I can't recall who sent the initial friend request through Facebook, but needless to say we did reconnect. The last time that I saw here was at the funeral of our mutual friend David Mills, who was also an African American liberal, not that it matters.
Our little run in occurred when she posted a link on Facebook with the headline "Rick Perry Refuses Obama's Offer For A Tarmac Handshake" that was on the liberal website Huffington Post. Along with the link to the article were her comments of "So disrespectful. So racist." That is where I took offense.
Ever since Barack Obama became president, it has become fashionable to label anybody who disagrees with him or gives him any sort of slight, it is automatically labeled "racist." After a while, you get tired of hearing that same, tired, baseless attack. Usually, I ignore liberal Facebook postings that I disagree with. This time, I made a comment. Perhaps, I should have stuck with my policy of ignoring those posts.
Essentially, I told my friend that I was disappointed that she decided to pull the "racist" card out of the bag. Needless to say, she was not happy with my response. I won't bore you with everything she responded with, but basically attacked me as a white man who would not understand what she experiences as a black woman.
To a degree, she is right. I do not know what it is like to be a black woman, or a black man for that matter. That does not mean that I do not understand what it is like or that I haven't experience racism myself. I have witnessed racism in all its ugliness and I have been on the receiving end of racism when growing up.
When I was in elementary school, we were given the opportunity to bring music that we liked into the classroom to share with our classmates. I brought in a record from the Disney movie "Dumbo" because I liked the song from the video below.
A few years later, I was an overweight, 4-eyed white kid in a school with a large African American student body. I was left out of a lot of recess activities because I didn't "fit in." Eventually, I was able to show that I could hang with the more athletic peers on the field of battle as it were and earn a level of respect.
I would be naive to think that racism doesn't still exist with some people. People as a whole are fallen, sinful individuals, and nothing is going to change that. Unfortunately, in the Barack Obama age, society has become like the proverbial boy who cried wolf. The more people cry racism where it doesn't truly exist, the more likely people won't react when it really does.