Friday, July 17, 2009

It's Different for White Folks

The other night Peter and I had dinner with a friend of mine and her boyfriend--yes, a couples date sort of thing. They are moving to San Francisco, the land of perfect weather--a place that only rains so that the city can show off its large rainbows that stretch across the entire heavens. Sometimes the city is so generous, she'll give you two huge rainbows simply because she loves you. (That bitch Chicago will only give you slushy rain/snow and hail because that's just how she rolls.)

I was telling the boyfriend that I would love to move somewhere with warm weather, but I didn't want to go out to the West Coast. I'm a bit nervous about the South because I'm Asian.

"Southern people are the nicest people you'd ever meet," he said. "They're not racist at all."

Hmmm... Southern people being racist? Where would I get a CRAZY idea like that?

I tried to explain that I'm sure that many many Southern people are perfectly wonderful, but there aren't very many Asian people down there.

I happened to have grown up in New York City, the melting pot capital of the world--and still having my fair share of racist bullying from the kids at my elementary school in Queens. So I sort of know what I'm talking about.

But he kept going on and on and on about how Southern people are great and get a bad rap until Peter said, "But you're white. Of course they're nice to YOU."

Plus, aren't Southern people nice to you to your face and then they put sheets over their heads and run you out of town?

I've been to Superbowl parties at my sister-in-law's house and their friends, the people who they claim are the NICEST people in the world--people they have entrusted as godparents to their children--start using the N-word as soon as they get a few drinks in them.

I really do hope there are less racists in the world than I think there are--that would be great. After all, we did elect a black man into office and how we're getting a woman of color in the Supreme Court. The times--They are a'changin'.

I hope we really are ushering in a new era when we can say, "Americans are the nicest people you can ever meet. They're not racist at all."

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