My own mom was bi-racial (black-white).
We Never knew it. We Never thought of it. It Never mattered in my culture. She was just…mom.
…and I remember witnessing dogs play with cats, pigs teasing dogs, and rats harassing cats. You see this all the time on America’s Favorite Video. They were all in the same family – learning each other as siblings.
So it would seem that “difference is only realized when similarity is learned.” In other words, “if difference is learned as safe, and safe is learned as normal, then difference is learned as normal.”
Difference = Safe. Safe = Normal. Then Difference = Normal.
If Difference = Unsafe. And Safe = Normal. Then Difference cannot be Normal.
So my wife has East Indian in her family.
So my wife has Latino in her family.
So my wife has Chinese in her family.
So when we get together what you perceive as “different” is actually “normal” for us.
So a little White child (3 – 5) from a White family will see a Black as different, where different = unsafe. That Black person is unsafe. That is not racist!!!
That is Similar = Normal where Normal = Safe. Therefore Similar = Safe.
That will hold true until that child is offered an expansion of experiences. An expansion of experiences offers us an opportunity to widen our world…widen our concept of Difference = Safe. Just opportunities. Some of us will choose them. Some of us will anger why we don’t.
So here is a true story. I knew this girl. She was a teacher. She was biracial (black – white). Her mom was Black. The story goes that all through primary school, her mom was her mom. When she hit 7th grade and really started to align herself with the concept of beauty and friendship grouping and socialization, she did not want to be perceived as “different.” So she told her friends that her mom was her maid. All through high school, her friends thought that her mom was her maid. She made her mom her maid.
She was 26 before she ever truly began to regret that. She was so angry at her mom for being her mom – for being Black…for being different…for causing her to lose friends…for causing her to disown her mom.
Think of what Dr. Bow shared with us. Comment in that context.