Sometimes a check is just a check. On occasion…it's a teachable moment.

Discussion in 'Race, Religion, Science and Politics' started by Sean P, Feb 11, 2016.

  1. Sean P

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    Even though I live in the relatively liberal city of Seattle, I regularly have to put people in check in response to their biases and stereotyping.

    Earlier this week, I was too lazy to cook dinner so I decided to grab takeout from a bar a couple blocks from my house. As I entered, I could see a white guy and a Brotha standing toe to toe at the end of the bar beginning a rather lively, but brief discussion. There was no one behind the bar, but I could see the bartender in the kitchen at the back. It quickly became clear that the white guy, like the Brotha, was a customer. The white guy was confronting the Brotha demanding to know whether the Brotha had paid his bill. The Brotha let the white guy know that, of course, he had paid his bill, let loose with a few more choice words and left the bar.

    As the white guy turned to walk back to his seat, the bar tender was just returning from the kitchen. The white guy was clearly a bit unsettled. As he reached his seat, he asked the bartender whether the guy who had just left had paid his bill. By this time, I had taken a seat at the bar, which was 2 seats away from where the white guy had been sitting. The bartender confirmed that the Brotha had indeed paid his check. The white guy promptly muttered that he "probably shouldn't have said anything." Since I couldn't leave this situation alone, I turned to the white guy and said "you shouldn't have said anything; you would never be approached like that."

    The bartender, perplexed, asked what had happened. The white guy repeated that he probably shouldn't have said anything. Then he said, "oh nothing, the guy who just left saw me on Sunday and he didn't like who I was cheering for." I said "that's not what happened; you shouldn't have said anything; that would never happen to you." The white guy responded that he just didn't understand why the Brotha "took it that way." I told him that he didn't have to understand because he would never be confronted like that. I informed him that the Brotha's reality and my reality were different than that of most, if not all, white men. I said that I am a 51 year old professional who works for a Fortune 100 company and that situations like the white guy confronting the Brotha happen to me on a DAILY basis. He again muttered that he didn't understand why the Brotha reacted as he did. I repeated that he didn't have to understand because that's not his reality. Yet, he could learn from this experience.

    The white guy looked a bit wounded and said "I didn't mean it like that." I emphatically said that it didn't matter how he meant it. There was no other way for the Brotha to take it and that while he (the white guy) may not have meant it that way or even understand why the Brotha reacted, he could learn from this experience. The white guy said "you're right…"

    To me, it honestly looked like a light bulb may have gone off in the white guy's head and that he was going to do his best to engage in some self-reflection. By this time, my food was ready. I looked the dude in the eye, shook his hand and headed for the door.

    Without a doubt, all of us regularly put folks in check. I'm curious whether any of you have been presented with an opportunity for a teachable moment? If so, did you take the time to educate the ill-informed and what was the result?
     
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  2. OckyDub

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    First off...
    [​IMG]
     
  3. OckyDub

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    Second off...
    You better than me. I would have not said anything...because, my confrontational filter doesn't work properly. I'M TIRED and have no patience for educating white America...its exhausting.

    Maybe, just maybe, the black dude had already did that before you got in the bar. IDK

    Either way thank you for having the time and patience.
     
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  4. Sean P

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    Thank you. Trust me. The Brotha let the white guy have it! That allowed me to temper my response.

    I have lived in Seattle off and on for a long time. That experience teaches you the art of patience (sometimes); I've been known to go left when it's just too much...
     
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  5. OckyDub

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  6. grownman

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    The first thing that comes to mind is-a situation where this white woman had a black stepson. We were outside going to our cars after eating. Well, you know how you hang around outside waiting for you lover, family, or friends to bring they slow ass on? This family was doing the same thing. Okay, no problem-the problem came when she ignorantly said, "I love when black and white mix-the babies are soo pretty." I heard her ignorant ass and looked at her with my evil stare. Her ignorant ass knew she blurted out what she was thinking. I said "so might daughter (which I lied of course) isn't pretty because she is a beautiful African American young woman? The family got quiet and she apologized but this is the kind of thinking that has and/is causing low self esteem among beautiful young girls. The darker skinned girls get it the most. Another sad fact is the majority of comments she made our echoed but our own people...
     
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  7. Sean P

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    Snap Ocky…
    file://localhost/Users//Library/Mobile%20Documents/com~apple~TextEdit/Documents/Untitled%205.rtfd/Pasted%20Graphic.tiff
     
    #7 Sean P, Feb 12, 2016
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 12, 2016
  8. Sean P

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    Clearly, my meme and gif game still needs work (cue Key and Peele).
     
  9. Champagne Papi

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    If the person is white, absolutely not! I have neither the time nor patience to educate them....they have access and privilege.

    If the person is of colour, then may be yes....my people weren't afforded such luxuries.


    But props to you because you are definitely better than I am.
    [​IMG]
     
  10. ColumbusGuy

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    Thank you for posting this. I wish there were more people like you(both black and white) and you seem like a genuinely good person for at least reaching out-instead of just lashing out.
     
  11. Sean P

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    Thank you!
     
  12. OckyDub

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  13. NikR

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    Ur better than me. I don't know of I'd be able to contain my contempt.

    Smh. This is what happens when white "progressives" that think they can do no wrong get hit by reality. Deny deny deny. I guess he was embarrassed after the fact.

    Of course he meant it like that. He decided to accuse a black man of theft without any info. Just pulled that nonsense right outta his a$$. And he was wrong. And got called out on it. He learned something about himself- that prejudice is alive and well... surprise, surpise! Props for taking the time to call him out.
     
  14. Sean P

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    Thanks man! Sometimes you have to help people learn a little bit about themselves.
     
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