Last week I went downtown to pick up a few things. While awaiting a sales clerk, a white male sauntered up to me. He bent down pretending to look at something, rifling through the merchandise. Then he looked at me then smiled.
The conversation began with him commenting on the prices of things and how concerned he was with the current state of the economy. Then his next comments centered around Donald Trump and the political parties he has to choose from and how he understands why many whites, especially white males, would vote for him.
Me: Oh? Why is that?
Him: There’s a lot of scared white people right now.
Me: Scared? (Looks at a piece of flannel then puts it back) Scared why?
Him: Well…America is not the America we knew. Things have changed. A lot of people feel that America is gone.
Me: Where did it go?
Him: I have a job, right, and I’m on food stamps. I can’t make ends meet. You know how many people are in my position? Trump, at least, is a mover and a shaker. He’ll get things done. He’ll make things right with us.
Him: (laughs) You know, whites are scared of black people rising up. (looks at me a bit nervously then laughs again)
Me: Why would you be scared of that? What do we have to do with your life?
Him: There’s a lot of us that feel if you rise, you’ll take revenge on us for what we’ve done to you.
Me: Well, let me ask you something then. If revenge is on your mind and your so fearful of it, why not use your power, your influence, your money, your privilege to treat us better? Why not try to change things so if we do rise, we may not seek vengeance?
Him: Ohhh… we don’t think like that. (waves hand dismissively) We’re just scared of your revenge. That’s why Trump is getting so much support. He makes us feel safe again.
He ratted on about Bernie Sanders and his possible Jooish heritage and how Ben Carson would never be president when the sales clerk, overwhelmed and rushed, came over. I asked her to cut me a piece of flannel for my sewing project. I half-listened to this older, graying, white man and thought about his comments again.
Me: Hmmmm….I see. (half paying attention, half wondering why whites are so damn attracted to me and can’t leave me the fuck alone for five damn minutes)
Me: Well…I’d better get going…good luck in the future with things…
I picked up my fresh piece of fabric and hurry out, not wanting to have another encounter.
In my car, I allow myself to sit and digest what this white man just told me.
“We don’t think like that…”
You know, over the course of my life, I’ve had many honest encounters and conversations with white people. For some reason, this one sticks like no other.
“We don’t think like that…”
If I hurt someone and kept on hurting them, I’d come to some realization that maybe, just maybe, that person would get sick of my shit and one day strike back. That is reasonable, no? Therefore it is also reasonable for me to surmise that I should STOP MISTREATING THEM TO PREVENT MY IMPENDING DOOM.
That is also reasonable, no?
If I, a lowly Negress, a poor farmer from the islands whom society deems lower than a cockroach, can come up with the simple answer on how to CHANGE MY KARMA, why is it that these “superior” beings cannot?
WHAT kind of “person” doesn’t reflect on their crimes?
WHAT kind of “person” keeps on doing the same thing over and over and over KNOWING one day, they’ll be severely punished?
My simple answer: A humanoid. An unPerson. A non-Hueman.