There were five of us at a nice restaurant in Baltimore. Two of the others were my daughter, Lindsay, and her love, Monroe. I normally wouldn’t make this distinction, but I am for purposes of this post … Monroe is Black.
So we waited some more as we looked at the same open table. Monroe again went back and asked about the table. Again, we were told something that didn’t make sense.
We waited at least 30 minutes, and after I went over to ask, they finally sat us at THAT SAME TABLE and acted like it had been waiting for us all along.
Side note – my former boss and mentor often said if something wasn’t logical, there’s probably another reason for it. This definitely did not make sense. There had to be another reason for it.
At some point I had this horrific realization that I wouldn’t allow myself to believe. Eventually, I had to ask Monroe. I said something like, “Please tell me this didn’t happen because you checked us in and you’re Black.”
In his typically kind manner, with a little half smile, he said, “Just another day in the life.”
That was three years ago, and it still haunts me. That was the day my nice little bubble was shattered. I thought I didn’t have white privilege. I thought the whole concept was exaggerated. I mean, I’m Jewish, so I’ve certainly had some struggles over the years. I understood what a member of a minority could go through. I was in a minority. I got it … until the day I didn’t. I’d had no idea.
I’m still stunned that this happened. I haven’t even talked about it much because I haven’t known what to say. I don’t even know if the other two people in our group had the same perception. But I know this. It was not logical.
Now that several horrific actions have senselessly taken the lives of Black people, my comparatively minor experience has come back to me once again. It wasn’t just a fluke. It has been made very clear that horrible things have happened to people for no reason other than the color of their skin. And let me say this - I’m not angry at all police officers. I’m angry at a society that has turned a blind eye over and over and over again.
This has to change, and it has to change now. And yes, I will be a part of it.