Racism?

So, I listened to a young kid the other day talking about his pet shedding all over the living room. And then the words that came out of his mouth stopped me in my tracks and sent me on an internal dialog that occupied me for a while then, and has replayed in my head quite a few times since.

“This isn’t racist. There was black hair everywhere.”

What? How does that even work? Are be getting so sensitive about this that the word “black” is going to be something we’re not allowed to say anymore without a caveat? That is just ridiculous if that’s going to be even something a few people try to make common practice.

I will never pretend to have any idea what folks of African or likewise heritage have been through. I’m about as white as they come, grew up in suburbs and rural areas, very little exposure to anyone that wasn’t of “European” descent (the darkest folks I usually had contact with were Italians). But are we really going to go that sensitive? To me, that would seem to be creating MORE of a rift between people rather than creating understanding and tolerance.

I’m not sure what the answer is, but I don’t believe this is it. Neither is taking away words from people. I know there’s a lot of “I’m offended by that word/phrase so you shouldn’t be able to say it anymore.” I wonder how many of those people would have been offended by it if they weren’t told to be offended by it from other people.

We’re headed in the wrong direction in my opinion. And the idea of anyone thinking that talking about their pet making a black furry mess on the floor could be construed as “racist” is a sad, sad state of affairs.

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