Search This Blog

Friday, July 12, 2013

Deen's bad rap

A lot of people are not going to understand my stand on this issue but a lot of people did not grow up in the deep south in the 50s, 60s and 70s. For those of us raised down in the deep south, we were raised by our parents and grandparents and even some great grandparents. These nurturing relatives had ideas about slavery and blacks and they passed them down. When we got old enough to think for ourselves we were able to sift through the information and make our own decisions. It was an ongoing process. It still is.

I never heard my grandparents refer to blacks as anything but nigras my whole life. Imagine my surprise when I found out that wasn’t even a word.

In New Orleans I saw black people disrespect each other because anyone with skin coloring darker than a paper bag was considered a lesser person. That was a black on black crime.

Most people are surprised to find out that in the age of slavery, New Orleans had many residents that were free people of color. Many of those free people of color owned slaves. Another black on black crime.

I remember water fountains for colored people when I was a little girl. But, I also remember water fountains being tied up with cloth on days little children were making their first communions. Customs have changed in many areas.

Of course, my most significant memories are of high school. I went to a public all girl high school in the metropolitan New Orleans area. The reason our schools were separated by sex is because the powers that be could no longer be separated by color. Little black boys and little white girls were not allowed to go to high school together because the school board thought we would be fornicating in the streets, unable to stop ourselves. Yes, thought processes were pretty stupid back then but that was the times. Paula Deen is almost ten years older than I am and was raised in even more entrenched stupid.

A more fair question directed to Paula Deen would have been, have you used the n word in the last 25 years? You cannot judge people by actions long ago that were dictated by a way of life back then. Those experiences with lots of other information have made us who we are today. Those experiences alone are not who we are today.

Mildly related, I grew up in a time when black is beautiful reigned. I have a hard time today referring to blacks as African Americans. I like black is beautiful. But, I’m sure my parents had a hard time going from colored to black. As I said this is an ongoing education.

I think Paula Deen got a bad rap. I for one will be boycotting those boycotting her. I find their judgmental dashes away from her and her products unforgivable. But, I would be willing to forgive if they do, too. After all, it’s an ongoing education.

No comments:

Post a Comment