Faux Pas

Author: • January 6, 2016 • Short Stories

Hay Bale © Kim Fyson via http://www.geograph.org.uk/I don’t know what to do around white people sometimes.  I have trouble addressing the issue.  I write in the hopes of changing that, but even now I struggle to be direct.  I’ve spent years immersed in white culture and I’m trying to find my way back.  Somewhere along the line I assured myself that talking about race or confessing any racial pain in front of white people is a faux pas.  The dictionary defines that as “an embarrassing or tactless blunder; a misstep.”  That encapsulates my feelings when discussing with white audiences such quickly forgotten souls as Trayvon Martin.  How many times had I wandered into the dead of night wearing the same black skin, and the same black hoodie as Trayvon, in search of the same snack?  “There’s no connection,” I’m assured.   “Happened somewhere else,” I’m told.  “It’s not about race.  Why does it have to be about race?”  The question itself masks a serious longing for reconciliation.  I, too, long for reconciliation because a part of me is white and, aren’t I human?

 

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About the Author

Matt SmithAuthor: Matt Smith

Country of residence: United States

Nationality: American

Mother tongue: English

Matt Smith is a writer, teacher, activist, and pop-culture maven. He spent four years in Ulsan, South Korea as an ESL instructor and in that time set foot on four continents and sixteen countries. Currently, he resides in Portland, Oregon. You can find him hanging around the second run movie theaters and pizza joints.

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