Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Color Blind

I had a white kid rapping in my class where white kids are in the minority. He was rapping and the black kids were laughing and joking with him. He was taking it with a smile and it was all good. It was really bad rapping but he was trying and he was funny.

It was all good....until...

One of the black kids said, "Man dat wuz so bad, go ta da back o' da bus."

The white kid, laughing and joking, said, "Man you're at the back of the bus."

Dead silence and 3 black guys stood up and were ready to kill the white kid. What the white boy meant, as he's trying to explain and backing away from the three large black boys who were gearing up to rip him apart, was that all the black kids picked seats in the back of the room and they sit there together, as a "presence."

I see the trouble and run to stand in front of the white boy and throw my arms wide in front of him and say, at the top of my lungs with a smile on my face, "Stop! You can't hit a fat, old white woman with glasses!"

The black guys stopped dead in their tracks and just started laughing. Then they listened to ME explain what the white kid meant and then they all said things like, "we cool. It's all good."

Holy crap. I thought I was going to have a new Rodney King in reverse happening.

For whatever reason I seem to have a good relationship with the black boys. One day I asked one of them to "shake his dreads" at me and he did and laughed because he constantly hears music in his head and his head is always bopping to some imaginary music. Once I asked one of them if I could touch his 'fro to see if it felt like cotton candy and he let me, and howled with laughter.

Once, a kid was complaining and griping and I finally told him to be quiet. I was rather loud and emphatic. He then asked me if I had a problem with him because he's black. I clutched my chest and feigned a look of surprise and staggered around, saying, "Oh. My. Goodness! Really? You are? You're black? No way! I don't believe you. You're lying! You are so not black!" By the time I get done with all that, he's rolling with giggles.

I'll miss those guys. And what's sad is that when those kids go back home, most of them will go back to what they were doing: drugs, booze, pills, gangs, guns, stealing cars, robbing folks, and worse... and will probably be killed in a gang related crime. That breaks my heart.



Curley said...

Maybe so. But for one little minute you made them giggle and brought a little light-heartedness into their worlds. Plus, you never know maybe they will survive and make something out of their lives and grow up and remember the silly white teacher that made them giggle.

Jimmie Earl said...

Yeah, what Curley said. I am so da** proud of you!