We just had an experience at our bridal store where 4 blacks came in one diverted our salesperson’s attention. The remaining 3 huddled around our jewelry caseand then left. The salesperson checked the case and found $600.00 worth of jewelry missing.
Spokane has a very small minority population, but I grew up in Seattle with quite a different racial mix. I can remember growing up that my dad’s thursday night poker games included a black man named John Johnson. He was kind and friendly to me as a little kid as were the others in the group. This was at a time before Rosa Parks and desegregation.
My high school was all white at the time, in my senior year they bussed in 9 blacks. I became friends with one of them and didn’t think much of it. Going to BYU provide no contacts with blacks – the only ones on campus were football players.
Graduated and moved to Spokane, where at the time the minority population was less than 3%, yet two years later we elected a black mayor.
Growing up and even when older I made my share of black / racist – pollock – disability jokes. And I laughed at plenty of other people’s black / racist – pollock – disability jokes.
I never really thought I was racist. But you know what – I really am!! I’ve tried to anyalize my feelings, who they are really directed toward and why I feel that way. What I think I’ve discovered is I’m prejudice against “Ghetto blacks” and “Trailer Trash”.
Ghetto blacks to me are: the uneducated – the gang members – the society owes me – the I’m black so I deserve special/different treatment – the I’m African American – the black talking blacks. I respect and admire the blacks who speak well – the ones who don’t complain about being black – the ones who have worked hard to get where they are at.
As for the Trailer Trash, I guess I put them right there with the Ghetto blacks – uneducated – welfare mentality – etc.
I look at these two groups – I react differently toward them, I don’t trust them, especially in our stores.
I am prejudice – but I feel I can’t help it.