Monday, February 17, 2020
My early military brat years were spent in the protective bubble of a desegregated military world. I am sure there was racism, but nothing a child of 5 or 6 would notice. At that age, our experiences come from the Big Picture, not the underlying subtleties of the Real World.
It was in the early 1960's after my father retired from the Air Force and we moved to Tallahassee, Florida that I was rudely brought into the Real World. I learned Life has a dark ugly side to offset the bright sunny side folks hold near and dear to their hearts.
1963 Tallahassee was a typical segregated southern city of whites and blacks kept apart wherever possible. I witnessed White on Black violence behind the turned backs of White cops during civil rights marches. I felt the intense hatred from a crowd in a Black only movie theater I mistakenly walked into. It was a serious coming of age period. My education only continued as I grew up in other areas while watching my country transition from Jim Crow to something else.
That "Something Else" was no longer the overt world of Jim Crow and weekly Klan meetings advertised in local gazettes. Racism had dropped below the Sunny Side's radar where it has been festering for 45-50 years now. It took Trump to kick the hidden racism into brighter lights with his program of enabling hateful tweets, speeches and rallies. I guess we should be grateful to Trump for slapping our country with this dose of Reality. There are Evils out there that will never be conquered. They will only be beaten back. And to fall back into a satisfied complacency that the Evil is defeated is just giving it time to lick its wounds so it can come back stronger and uglier the next time.
Image from "From Open White Supremacy to Stealth"