02 May 2009

Lexington...white people anyone?

Being in Kentucky always brings back memories. This is the place that first took my pride as a debate person, the first place where I experienced true debate glee, the place that validated me as a debate coach, and where my boy won 12K betting on the Kentucky Derby, putting money on a D Wayne Lukas and Bob Baffart trifecta. But the thing I always forget about this place is it's white. Really white. Terrifyingly white. I sometimes wonder if it's string a nigga up white...now some of you all might be thinking, "this niggas just paranoid, just afraid of white people," and to some extent, you'd be right. But not really, actually, not at all. I'm FROM Minnesota, the place where I grew up, we were the only blacks in the county, and Minneapolis-Saint Paul not exactly the hotbed of diversity, if you remove the Hmong...

But I digress...I was talking about whiteness...everywhere I go in this town, I am surrounded by white, sometimes hostile, sometimes not, faces. But it's not just that everyone is white- it's the overall homogeny of the area- everyone seems to be the same kind of white. I will preface this with I have very little actual knowledge of the city of Lexington. It could have Kentucky's most extensive Chinatown, they may have an urban cultural center, or they may have an intense Latin American community just out of sight...but i seriously doubt it. and even if they did, it seems they don't want people to see these people, which would actually be worse than a world where there were just no minorities around.

but seriously, it just seems strange to me. i'm a little different. physically as well as by every other measure you would use to measure people. but one of the things i can say i truly treasure living in the bay area is the diversity of people...all kinds of people. it's really hard to go to any given location and just see a homogenous group of anything in the bay area (in public, i'm sure homogony exists in buckets at an ethnic church of any origin or things along those lines), and so i've just gotten used to being around tons of different people and it just seems natural and right. when i look around and i see no minorities, i kind of start thinking to myself "there are no minorities here, what do they know that i clearly should?" it's at this time when i decide to leave the scene, and relocate and do other things...not every place is blessed with diversity, with a world where you can grow and learn from a wealth of people and ideas, and if you are fortunate to live in one of these locations, you should just be happy about it, revel in it, and make sure to not take it for granted, because when you do, you'll find yourself encircled with people that are essentially mirror images of themselves.

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