Saturday, August 15, 2009

The Need For More Civility And Respect For Each Other In Our Community

Why did I come to the Riverdale Wal-Mart that evening again?

I had honestly forgotten as I was standing in the store at 9pm.

I had heard that there was an employee at this particular Wal-Mart location that had tested positive for TB. I had gone there to see if the store had any messages posted on the window notifying the customers. This, even though the public health officials said that the customers were not in any danger. (This is the only reason why I would dare to go there upon hearing the news about the outbreak).

Standing in line at Wal-Mart in the evening is always a frustrating experience. They had 100 cash registers but only 2 were open.

I go to stand in the line behind the woman in the photo and the cashier at this "self checkout" center told me that this particular lane had closed.

Then I noticed that the customer was cursing at the cashier:

"Get the F**k away from me. You had better get the F**k away from me B*tch". Initially a guy standing behind me and I thought that they were both playing. We had walked over to the first line and yet this woman kept on going. Clearly she was not playing.

She went on curing out the cashier. There was nothing physical. Only an abundance of IGNORANCE coming out of her mouth in public.

When she left the cashier said "This woman don't know who she is messing with. When she was cussing at me I had to hold myself back from getting right back at her".

I give her credit because she largely ignored the woman. I could not see why the customer was so upset.

When I walked outside this same ignorant woman was loading her food into a Mercedes. Clearly the car is no indicator of the class that a person has. I decided to "mean mug" the woman as I walked past but she did not even look back at me.


It is hard to understand how some people think.
Black folks spend so much time fighting against the NEGATIVE PROFILES that so many of us say that outsiders have against us. This stereotype is used to our detriment. Our increased presence triggers a mass exodus - is the way the story goes.

Among some people there is a lack of a standard baseline for behavior in the general public. I saw nothing that the cashier was doing to provoke the continuing verbal assault that this woman was mouthing.

She cared not that there was a bunch of people staring at her as if she was crazy. She only wanted to "speak her mind" to the other Black woman who was some sort of threat to her.

It is very true that this was one, independent Black woman who was not an "official representative" of the Black community.

Still we have to make up our minds.

When it comes to certain considerations due to our history in this nation she indeed is allowed under the veil of "Black Victimhood" and is entitled to all that is centrally negotiated on our behalf.

At the same time if someone makes inference about this woman's ignorant behavior and, after having watched the news of the "Bloody Summer" in Atlanta begins to build a PROFILE about Black folks - how is it that anyone can deny that a profile does indeed exist?

The solution is pretty straight forward. IF you know that profiles and stereotypes are reality, regardless of how they are frowned upon (and you know Black folks have a profile of White folks, so please stop your denial) - then it seems to me that there is a need for some inward management and guidance to our own people to insure that we are maintaining some level of civility so that fewer people are contributing to a negative stereotype of us as a loosely connected group.

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