Tuesday, November 24, 2009

On how cute black boys do grow up and become black men

There is a lot of conversation in our home these days about racism. I'm taking a class called "Racial Healing" and Mr. Silly Pants is on a Tim Wise reading binge. It's been good fodder for conversation. We're trying to do our work - the work of raising our amazing, beautiful, feisty, tender, sweet, busy, and luscious brown boy.

I did a lot of research about raising an internationally adopted child, about transracial and transcultural parenting, and about attachment for adopted children. I read a ton. I read everything I could get my hands on. I talked with everyone who would listen, and everyone who I thought would have some wisdom and perspective. It has been quite a journey. I can say that my experience has only deepened and become more complicated now that Blueberry is our son - he is real, vibrant, beloved and black.

I don't know how I missed this post by a fellow (and oh so favorite) blogger. Heather says it perfectly, "Cute little black boys do grow up to be black men."  Well, I do know how I missed this post - I was in Washington state on vacation. We were on the Olympic Pennisula when THIS happened.  Heather was writing about the very things that made me cry and weep and convulse with fear and indignation.

So I was thinking about the following challenge for majority folks like me - what would you say about a challenge to bring minority culture into our lives 100%? Try it for a month. Do it for a year. Live it. Breath it. Everything you do must reflect minority culture - music, books, movies, TV, news, magazines,  eating out...everything you do must be with the intention of being outside of the majority experience.

I saw this challenge raised on a film clip we watched in our Racial Healing class - and it got me to thinking. People of color are SURROUNDED/BOMBARDED with images of white culture every single day. Think about it. Turn it around.

Are you up for the challenge? I think I'm going to learn a lot from this experience.


rebekah said...

Ok, I bestowed upon you the Kreativ Blog Award going around right now. For posts exactly like this - which are creative in the unusual way that I like creative. Not Kreativ, but that's the award, so we roll with the misspelling which hurts a bit every time I type it.

Mindy and Baldwin said...

I second the motion for the Kreavtive Blog Award!

I'm up for the challenge- I think my most difficult area will be where to get my news. I'm an NPR junky without a television, and I don't think listening to BBC news would count (though they do cover Africa pretty thoroughly which I admire)

The books and music part I think is easy...thankfully we are living in a time with so many fabulous authors from around the globe and our music choices are endless.

And yahoo for Tim Wise! He really nails it.

*what a long comment I just left. sorry for the novel! :)

jayme said...

I love this, and think it would be an interesting and important sort of experience. We're lucky in that my husband and I are in the minority in our neighborhood (which is exactly why we chose to live here. Not the only reason, but a major consideration) so seeking out opportunities for cultural exchange and immersion are not difficult.

We do make a very conscious effort to surround ourselves with people, foods, experiences, etc. from a variety of cultures (see my "on raising little citizens of the world post) but there is always room for improvement.

Meghan, you are inspirational in the effort you put into crating and maintaining those connections. That's my biggest downfall.

The Stephensons said...

Every caucasian parent with minority children should put themselves in situations where they are the minority. Each experience will be a learning experience. I'm sorry you had to come in contact with the men in the truck. That would have been a frightening experience.