Shauna has cautioned me from blogging too politically until the book has been released, with the idea that if I were to do so, I would alienate potential readers before they have a chance to read.
I get the premise. I mean, I DO have a business degree which included a few marketing classes. So, I understand the logic.
But as stated numerous times before, I’m more of an emotional being. So… I’m angry, and I have no choice but to talk about this.
I have a friend, a dear friend for well over a decade. This friend is Filipino. (Filipina? Does heritage have a female/male thing?) Anywho, I have witness my friend go through so much crap in her life and overcome feats that most could not. She is one of the strongest people I know. In fact, she doesn’t know it, but she was the inspiration for one of my characters. (Not personality wise per say, but her story, but I digress)
Anyway, this friend turned her life around in such a grand fashion and found a way to follow her passion for the environment, animals, and helping others in the way of disaster relief. She was there cleaning up after the BP oil spill and found her calling, and I’m so proud of her for it.
Currently, she’s working in Florida to help with some of the storm clean up and rebuild of the rivers and stuff. (To be honest, I’m not 100% sure what she does exactly, but I know it’s hard work and outdoors, two components that immediately disinterests me. But, she loves her job, and I love her… so I roll with it when she talks about work.)
She called me today and this was our conversation.
Friend: So, I’m in backwoods Florida, right?
Me: *externally* Yeah?
*internally* This is not a good start to any story
Friend: Backwoods, racist ass Florida
Me: *both externally & internally* Uh, oh. What happened?
Friend: So, I go to a gas station and I tried to go inside. There’s this hillbilly dude who physically holds the door closed to prevent me from going in and yells through the glass, “ILLEGALS ARE NOT ALLOWED IN HERE!!”
Y’all…. I’m pissed.
As I said, the last presidential election was the catalyst that drove me to finally sit down and write something. Look, while I check EVERY. SINGLE. BOX in the “other” category, I have been blessed enough that MOST of my experiences (save a few stories) were of covert bigotry. Of people treating me differently in a manner that made me kinda know why, but not say anything for fear of being charged with playing a race card of some sort.
(Don’t get me STARTED on the “race card” BS. Another time, lemme focus…)
I have had minor instances of overt racism and bigotry, but they were mild, sometimes even funny in that, “I can’t believe this bullshit” kinda way. But THIS???
This is inexcusable.
I know that my little voice don’t mean shit in the cosmos; but I’m sick of this shit. We are all people, we all have the right to LIVE and to go into the damn gas station for a pack of cigarettes, a bottle of water, or even a pack of some damn Bubblicious without having our humanity questioned. What gives you the right to do that? Skin color? Wealth? Because you look on TV and see an immature man playing president and figure if he can do it and get elected, so can you?!
It’s not right. It’s not justifiable and I’ll tell you this. It cannot go on forever. You cannot mistreat people who are different from you and just assume that you will never have to answer for it. At some point, you will. At some point you will have to own up to your ugly hatred and when you do, it will NOT be pretty.
We are all human. We have the right to exist. YOU don’t have the right to belittle us for the mere audacity of existing. Her money and my money are just as good as yours. It doesn’t matter our skin color. It doesn’t matter what language we speak. It doesn’t matter who lies in bed next to us at night. It DOESN’T MATTER. You are not more important than anyone else. And one day, you will reap the very dark seeds you sow. I want to say that I feel sorry for you, but right now I can’t even bring myself to do that. Because I’m angry.
But maybe that’s what we need for something to change… Anger and the will to RESIST…