Fair warning: This is not a sexy post. I will understand if you do not wish to read it.
Fair warning: This post will cover not fun things. Really not fun things.
YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.
It never occurred to me that people would not realize I am angry.
But, as I sat on the couch last night chatting with my roommates, who spoke about their experiences with trying to uncloud the eyes of well meaning (or downright ignorant) people, the subject of being angry came up.
I am angry. Very angry. I don’t show that side of myself much. I don’t like to.
I often display bubbly, or eager, or quiet. There is shy or whimsical or horny. But angry, don’t show that much.
However, for one blog entry, let’s face it.
As a light skinned black woman with some Native American ancestry, I have quite a bit to be angry about.
There is the state of the lives of current Native Americans; a quick Wikipedia search brought me this gem:
“It has long been recognized that Native Americans are dying of diabetes, alcoholism, tuberculosis, suicide, and other health conditions at shocking rates. Beyond disturbingly high mortality rates, Native Americans also suffer a significantly lower health status and disproportionate rates of disease compared with all other Americans.”
— The U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, September 2004
But my knowledge of the lives of Native Americans is as an outsider. So instead I’ll focus on my own life experiences.
I grew up in a majority minority city. Still, when I went to high school, I was part of only ten percent of my small class that was black. Hmm…?
Could that be because my high school charged a tuition that the people living in the homes surrounding it couldn’t afford? Pretty much.
My parents could afford it, though, because of two factors. One, my father was a doctor and made a decent living. Two, I received an academic scholarship, which paid between a quarter and a third of the cost.
Before college, I actually never went to public school. My parents always found other schools to send me to.
God, even as I write this, just this, I want to stop.
I shove down my rage at this country, at my life, every day.
At the blatant sexism.
At the institutionalize racism.
At the disgust and hatred for undocumented workers, who are just trying to make their lives better for their families.
At the acceptance and blindness of those with privilege.
Do you read Captain Awkward? I think they’re pretty awesome. I am fairly new to the blog, with my introduction being the lovely gems of entries #322 & #323 (Sad Panda & Proto-Rapist) and #324 (My Friend The Rapist).
Jesus fucking Christ people.
I mean really. I was yelling at my phone as I read the entries, but thankfully Captain’s response to the letters posted calmed me down.
As a woman, I am angry and scared.
Scared one day some guy on my crew is going to get pissed off enough at me to attack me. Angry that un-funny sexist jokes get told by someone higher up than me, so I feel like I can’t say anything.
Scared when I drop off the truck at ridiculous o’clock at night, all by myself, someone will be at the warehouse, or just pass by, and decide it would be fun to attack me. Angry that I feel if I voice my fear to anyone but female coworkers, I’ll be seen as weak or I worry too much.
Yup, I’m pretty angry.
Still, I know I am privileged to have had a good education. I know I am privileged to be light-skinned, with a skin tone that often baffles people who meet me. (“What are you?” Yup, that gem.) I know I’m privileged. I know I have it better than many others of my race.
But I also see the ownership of the companies I work for, the upper level staff, and the crews I’m a part of, all dominated by white men.
When I do, when the full measure of shit-i-tude stares me in the face, I just shake my head, take a deep breath, and move on. Because there is rent. And bills to pay. And I have to eat. So I shove down my anger everyday. Everyday.
I turn on the work face or the social face. I give you pleasant or relaxed or upbeat. I give you what you want to see and say what you want to hear because it is just easier.
Most times it’s just easier to ignore my anger, easier to not have the conversation. Easier to not feel the despair, the hurt, the pain. Just… easier.
But don’t be mistaken. Under the facade, in my heart of hearts, everyday I am angry.
Categorised as: Rant
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