Taking it all in…

My President is truly changing the country. He may just be only one man — but, he means so much. When he stopped to look back at all the people who came to see him, it just showed he too understood what it all means.

I feel so proud. Although people would like to believe race is a non-issue in this country  — it is. To see this black man get to where he is….is…is…something to really take in. I mean really STOP and take it all in. We have to really understand where we came from to understand what it means when we succeed. Succeeding wasn’t always in the plans for us. We didn’t have any opportunities.  We didn’t have the chance to be educated. We for sure didn’t have the chance to become President of the Unites States of America. We have opportunities now. We have a chance now. We are the president now. Yes, I said we. His success will help us all. I want to believe so.

I liked the fact there were some black entertainers included in the inauguration. The first family is surely bringing some brown faces along for their awesome ride, huh?  I love it.

Not that long ago, we couldn’t sit in the front of a bus, much less on stage or included in a Presidential Inauguration.

My daughter is learning about Rosa Parks and Martin Luther Kind Jr. in school. I have to be honest, I have never mentioned their names to my children. I have books and I have information to share, but I really wanted them to understand black history. I mean really understand what I tell them. So, I have left it alone, until I thought they could understand. Also, when it comes to race, I am a little funny, with the kids. I don’t want to say something that makes them hate white people. You know? That wouldn’t be fair. So, I just watch, listen, observe and teach them to treat everyone the same.

Anyway, she was really interested in what she was learning in school. She asked me if I knew who Rosa Parks was and I let her tell me who she thought she was. She said “she was a woman who wanted to make her own rules.” That rubbed me the wrong way. That is what they told her in school. I told her she was not someone who wanted to make her own rules. She was someone who wanted the rules to be fair for everyone  She wanted to be treated like everyone else. She didn’t need a rule changed just for her sake. She wanted the rules to change for all people. I explained about us not being allowed in the front of the bus. I explained her stance lead to the rules being changed and every black person benefited.

We read a book about Rosa Parks. It was a really simple 1st grade level book, that seemed to be written by a non-black person. It didn’t say much and didn’t portray much either. But, it was appropriate enough and it gave me an in to have my own conversation. I broke it down for her and she said it “wasn’t fair and everyone should be treated the same.”  She asked “who made the rules?” I said “a white person.” She said “do white people still make all the rules?” I said mostly they did, but black people could make rules now too.”

I explained to her why I love Barack Obama so much. He was now the person who is in charge of the whole country and he can make rules too.”  I told her he was the first black president and there were 43 presidents before him. She was shocked. She said “43?!” so, all of other presidents were white?” I said “yes.” She wanted to know why. I said because “the white people never wanted us to become president. But, Barack Obama proved he could be just as good as them.” I would probably have to say even better. He had to work twice as hard.

We went on and on and she felt  “black people should not have listened to the white people, they should have made their own rules.” I took that as a way to push school and the importance of education. She already doesn’t like homework. So, I take every chance I can get to push the issue. I said “well, back then black people were not allowed to make rules, even if they had a better idea. No one wanted to listen to them. They were not allowed to go to school and people who do not go to school, can not make any rules. Even today, no one wants to listen to a person who uneducated, didn’t go to school, or didn’t take the time to learn something. So, that is why you have to go to school and do well, so you can make rules too; so people will listen to what you have to say.

Race is a crazy thing. I have more to say on race relations with my daughter. I’ll share another time.

 

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