Coates Personal Response

2069 Words 9 Pages
During his semester we’ve read books that talked about a multitude of problems including internal hatred, systematic racism, oppression, discrimination, problems with parents, and plethora of other subjects. While I related most to the author Coates, the themes Wilderson and Hartman are also very relatable. Attending a school with less than ten other colored students like myself had a huge impact on my self-esteem and the way I viewed myself growing up. Like Coates, fitting in was always a problem I had. I always felt like the odd one out, mostly because of the color of my skin but also because financially I couldn’t keep up with my “friends.” I remember constantly degrading myself and my culture to appeal as funny to them and now that I look …show more content…
His stories left me speechless and when I did have words it was a single “damn.” He told stories of growing up in an environment that he was never safe in, surrounded by people that didn’t understand him and his cautiousness, and feeling as if he was out of place. I lived in a town that was more than predominately white and attended a school where I could count the amount of black students on my hand. I moved to Ohio from a very country part of Georgia so being the only black student was something I had never experienced. Being told my skin was too dark and my hair was weird were never things I had heard of because my peers looked like myself, and being thrown into situations like this were very hard for me to accept. In third grade I was accused of slapping a girl because we were high fiving each other and she told a teacher I hit her too hard. The next year I was accused of being a bully because I insulted a girl after she made fun of my nose. And in fifth grade I had finally accepted that if I “acted white” I’d get a lot further than being …show more content…
I wouldn’t want my children waiting until their teen years to find out that the country they live in has a tolerance for unintentional racism by children. After all, kids only know what their parents teach them so I don’t blame other third graders for their ignorance, I blame their parents for not teaching them that in this country there are millions of people that don’t have the same features as them; and that’s what diversity is. Coming together as a country to learn from and uplift one another for being different and beautiful in the eyes of hundreds of different cultures. I think this same realization had a huge impact on Wilderson and his outlook on

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