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I was especially touched by the example used by Ms. Galloway on how she felt during her recent flight and the service received by the flight attendant. As an anglo citizen, I can never fully understand the marks left by the US's history of racism on a minority's soul. However, hearing perspectives, I feel, is a very good start. First and foremost, in no way do I feel the treatment she received was right or justified. However as I set and pondered, I wondered what might have been going through this attendants mind at the time. The many scenarios that run through my mind were addressed at the discussion. What I do wonder is if the attendant noticed the ladies watching her every move and felt unintentionally intimidated? I place myself in her position as I have worked my share of customer service jobs. I have been on the other side where many people were waiting on "me" to complete their service. I have had many people staring me down and getting impatient and it can be intimidating at times. Now, that does not mean I would skip those that were intimidating, for any reason. But could it be possibly this attentent felt intimidated and perceived Ms. Galloway's body language in an other sense? If she has never lived through prejudicism, maybe she cannot understand that perspective? After hearing this discussion, it did open my eyes to the black perspective as I never percieved my impatient, African American customers as feeling that they would not get their FAIR turn because of their race. Atleast as much as I can empathize with a situation I have never experienced. I have often wondered how we can begin to change this, but it is a very hard discussion to begin. That is why I enjoyed your discussion so much. Keep talking about these difficult subjects....maybe we can begin to understand one another. And maybe that is the first step in beginning the healing process. When marriages falter, we experience the loss of a loved one, or any other life altering event we talk about it. We go to therapy and we spend time with dear friends. Why would this not work with the issue of racism and the wounds that have not healed? Maybe our expectations have been wrong such as the point about color blindness. Maybe our idea of the ideal society is unrealistic. Maybe we need to change our expectations, we will never NOT see physical characterics in one another because we are wired to use sight as a survival tool. Lets use what we do naturally. We as humans, are given the unique ability to emphasize with one another, to communicate, and to see deeper than what is on the surface. Lets heal this problem the way we were designed to do it. Lets discuss the problem and lets try to understand one anothers perspective. Lets hope that this flight attendant sees this program and maybe a little healing can begin with her.
Excellent - it needs to happen regularly. Let's keep the conversation going!
I was surprised to hear the Metro editor of the Houston Chronicle said that he received several emails telling him that this year's election is going to be very urgly, and there are white folks who will rather die than to see a black man become the president of the United States.As an editor of the 4th largest city in the States, what will he do to help the government so that this election is not turned to Wild Wild West?
We can lament the past as much as time allows, but what will really make a difference is how we go forward. When Ms. Galloway was telling her sad tale, I couldn't help but think that—in cueing her granddaughter about what would happen with the flight attendant—she is perpetuating suspicion and hatred of white people. To just assume that the attendant was a racist—without hearing her side—is not only unfair but detrimental to the point of this debate. Racism is a two-way street. On the issue of the lack of amenities in black communities, I think we all know that it boils down to money. Many white communities are nicer than other white communities because white people spend the money and effort to enhance them. Not the government; private funding and hard work. I think the black community should be angry with it's own middle class. They seem to have disappeared to the suburbs. I'm as weary of man's inhumanity to man as anyone; however, since my relatives were indentured servants from Poland in the late 1880s, I don't want to be made to feel guilty about slavery. And many of the people who were complicit in the slave trade were fellow Africans. Don't misunderstand; I don't think we should ever forget slavery, Jim Crow, Auschwitz, Rwanda, Katrina, etc., but we need to quit looking for someone else to blame for what's wrong in our lives, to fix what can't be fixed. It's the responsibility of each of us to write tomorrow's history in how we behave and what we teach our children . Treat me as you want me to treat you. Most of us are willing, some are not and never will be. But if we're still part of the problem, the solution(s) will take that much longer.
Why were there only white, black and latino people on the panel? Are there not other races in this world? Does racism only involve these 3 races? I am Asian, and I have just recently moved to Houston, and I have to tell you, out of all the places I've been to, in the 3 weeks I have been here I have experienced the most blatant and obvious acts of racism, by both black and latino people! It's disgusting to me that while racism is a hot topic among black and latino people, it's perfectly acceptable to make racist and derogatory remarks against Asians! Case in point, look at Shaquille O’Neill's comment against Yao Ming. His remarks "inspired" Tony Bruno, the host of the nationwide Tony Bruno Morning Extravaganza radio show on the Fox Sports Network, to lead a special anti-Asian show during which he cracked racist jokes against Chinese and encouraged his listeners to call in and email their racist jokes concerning Yao and Chinese people. If anyone dared to lead an anti-black or anti-latino show they would be fired immediately! What's going on here people? Why does PBS air a show entitled "a conversation on race" which clearly EXCLUDES asians?
To the person who commented above - we did have 2 Asian-Americans booked, and both were unable to make it to the taping. We definitely see the need to continue this conversation and to include the full rainbow of people who make up our city.Unfortunately, with a limited number of seats, and short time to book (our last fill-in guest was booked at 1pm on Friday, and the show taped at 2pm - that was pretty close), we can't always get representation of everyone - but over the course of our programing and specials, I is our mission to make sure no one is left out.We here at HoustonPBS will continue to make sure there is a place for everyone at our table!Sorry for the lack of representation this time - but keep watching, we will get better.- Ernie
I would like to thank each one of you for your expression on my comments. I want to clarify some of my statements. I often fly and notice these same action on many of my flights. I am always reading untill the flight attendants approach my row at which time I look up. I was sharing the story with my grand daugther concerning hidden racism. This is by no means perpetuating suspicion on the white race. This same pattern happen with this flight attendant on several row behind me with another Africa American couple. Many incident such as waiting to be assisted in eating places and department stores, white workers often goes to the white person waiting, first. When you have not live as an Africa American you think thats this is small stuff and get over it! I lived in the segregated era, I know what it was like, and some of the same experince I encounter, still exist. I will share this last story: My husband and I were eating at a well up-scale restaurant and the white waiter kept passing our table, so I stop a African American waiter and ask if he could take our order, and he said of course. When we received our bill, I told my husband to tip him one hundred dollars. I knew he would let the other waiters know about the tip. So the moral of the story is ,you never know what blessings made come your way if you treat any race of people the way you would like to be treated. I have every race of people in my family. My two maternal greatgrand father were white, my first cousin is Asian, my dauther-law is Hispanic, and my greatgrand mother were Indian. In the census before the 1900, they change our race from malatoo to black, in order to protect the white slave from being identify. My white great grand father purchase two hundred acres of land in East Texas for my greatgrand mother (a slave) and their children. He even built a log cabin schoolhouse for the children. Our white relatives in East Texas has always acknowledge all of us as relatives. We all need to communicate and understand each other cultures and what behaviors and words that are reflected as racism among us all. There should be only one race "THE HUMAN RACE".Carol Mism Galloway
Ms. Galloway, Keep sharing. We cannot change something we do not talk about. I am white and was raised by very biggotted people. I am well aware of their faults and do try to end it with me. If I do not pass these traits down to my child, then we have atleast a new start with her. Although, I know it may not feel this way to you directly, but atleast in my community I have seen great strides. The attitude is not NOW what it was when I was a child. There are changes, albeit very slow changes. May God be with you and bless you. Keep trying to make changes. One day, maybe there will only be the human race.
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