I just watched this video on That Black Girl Site and wanted to share it with you. In the video, a mother records her daughter retelling a story that happened to her on the school playground; some white girls ran away from her and told her they fear her because she’s black. Marley, the black girl, is incredulous, and explains that the white girls’ parents must have taught them to stay away from black people.
Marley shouldn’t have to wonder about things like that, but obviously she and other children of color do. It’s certainly possible that her classmates’ parents explicitly taught them to fear black people. I think it’s more likely her classmates have already absorbed the many implicitly racist messages all around them: on television, in their school lessons, at family gatherings, etc.
Akilah (the mom) says it’s important (and unavoidable) for parents of color to talk with their kids about racism but I wish white parents were doing the same thing. Do the white girls’ parents know about this incident? Would they brush it off? Tell their kids never to mention – or think about – race again?
Have you ever had to have this conversation with your kids? Did your parents ever discuss race and/or racism with you when you were a child? Did they prepare you for or explain the racism you faced?