White Girl Guilt
Pasta Queen tells a story about a strange encounter in an unfamiliar neighborhood, and wonders if it means she is racist. I related to her inner struggle, which I’ve expressed here, and here, plus in another essay yet to be published. Here is an excerpt:
“I was standing on an unfamiliar porch, holding a stuffed animal from a Maurice Sendak children’s book, when I saw a man smoking a substance I wasn’t entirely sure was legal walk around the corner half a block away. He was black, so the fear I suddenly felt made me feel like a racist white girl. Sure, I was in a questionably safe part of town and, sure, his manner of dress and body language would have provoked suspicion even if he was white, but he wasn’t white. He was black, and when I’m scared of black men I feel racist even if my fear is justified.”
Between the election and the economic crisis, I’ve been in information overload. It’s very overwhelming. Bryan told me about NPR’s Planet Money podcast, so I started listening to it several times a week while the kids nap. What I like the most about it, is how the hosts break down everything for the most ignorant listener. For instance, he once interrupted a Harvard economist and asked him to explain “for the listeners at home” what the word “dividend” meant. That’s my kind of show.
The Mentoring Project
Author and speaker, Don Miller, recently launched The Mentoring Project, aimed at helping churches establish mentoring programs within their communities. His video lists some pretty staggering facts about fatherless children as well as mentored children. Don himself was raised without a father, so this project is very personal for him. A donation of just $5/month will support a mentor, which I think is a brilliant business model. Who can’t afford $5/month? Not many people. You should check it out.