Monday, September 21, 2009
Because it's hard being of African descent at Penn sometimes.
I know the video is already a YouTube phenomenon, but its message is ringing particularly true for me today. The clutched purse move is a classic, but I've been experiencing a much more nuanced brand of racism as of late.
The fearful look at night on the train.
The confusion at my anger over an ignorant comment in my African History class.
The silent bewilderment when I say where I go to school.
The eyes that scream, "I have no explanation for you. Black boys aren't usually found around these parts. How did you get here?"
One of my older family members said yesterday that Governor Paterson should know there are certain things Black folks just can't say. That he's been Black long enough to know that.
Maybe that's why I blogged about this instead of standing up in class today and shouting it, instead of forcing everyone to see me, really see me, for the first time. Not as performer or anomaly, but man. A fragile man whose skin isn't bulletproof.
This is the most honest piece of writing I have created in a long time. The video is funny but the reality isn't. Back to the mask for another day.