What It’s Like To Be Black In America
Most of the right-wing Bama Bashers and Gates critics have no idea what it’s like to be anything other than what they are. In fact, most white people have no clue what it’s like to have the black experience in America. Charles Blow (r), in the New York Times, knows a bit more about this than your average white person.
A New York Times/CBS News poll conducted last July asked: “Have you ever felt you were stopped by the police just because of your race or ethnic background?” Sixty-six percent of black men said yes. Only 9 percent of white men said the same.
These views are not without merit. A series of racial-profiling studies across the country have found that blacks and Hispanics are more likely to be stopped and searched than whites.
Blow, himself, was a stopped with a friend for driving while black during his college days in Louisiana. Trouble ensued when a switch blade comb fell out of his glove compartment.
The officer drew his gun. I froze. Then, realizing that it was just a comb, I told him so and pushed the button to make the comb pop up. I thought it was kind of funny. I was the only one. The officer grew irritated. He commanded me to “drop the weapon” and told Andre to exit the car.
…The officer gave a reason [for stopping the car]. It wasn’t true. Then he said something I will never forget: that if he wanted to, he could make us lie down in the middle of the road and shoot us in the back of the head and no one would say anything about it. Then he walked to his car and drove away.
He had raised the specter of executing us. He wanted to impress upon us his power and our worth, or lack thereof. We were shocked, afraid, humiliated and furious. We were the good guys — dean’s list students with academic scholarships. I was the freshman class president. This wasn’t supposed to happen to us.
Blow was stopped again years later, his kids in the car, for using a cell phone while driving, even though he answered a call while at a stop light. The officer then ticketed him a second time for not wearing a seat belt, claiming falsely that Blow put it on only after being stopped.
Gates had his experience later in life. Blow’s message to Gates: “Welcome to the club.”Click here for reuse options!
Copyright 2009 Liberaland