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Our children must realize racism is alive

Queen Brown | 3/13/2014, 9 a.m.

As a Mother who raised two Black sons I now understand the importance of discussing racism in America with our children, especially with our sons.  The discussion of racism can never begin too early. Ideally, it should began during early childhood and continue even during their adult life if we are to have hope and intend for our children to have a positive future in the United States of America.  Our children must understand and become familiar with the subtle and systematic signs of racial prejudice.  We must not wait for the next tragedy to occur to be willing to openly discuss the perils of being born Black and having to live in a society where racism still exists.

Our children are not the only ones experiencing and falling victims to racism. We too as parents are often met with the evil of racial disparities on our jobs and throughout our social lives.  Sadly, some parents are unsuspecting or ill-informed on the issue of racism in America.  The fact that some of us parents were raised during an era when schools and other public places were being integrated we inadvertently mistook those milestones as the ending of racism America. Therefore, some of us stopped talking with our children about how to succeed in a racist environment.  Before the civil rights movement racism was very overt and profound. Racism never ended in America, it merely just took on a new identity such as evident as mass incarceration and racial profiling.  But call it what you may, modern day racism has the same path and irreversible destructiveness as a 1950 lynching. We have to continually address racism publically to defy the hateful messages in some media and political forums.

The election of America’s first Black President brought out the best in most Americans.  Yet, on the other hand, it has shunned light on the level of hatred and ugliness that were percolating beneath the surface. President Obama’s election has been a blessing in many ways but in many ways it has served also to bring out the worse in so many Americans.  It is as if some Americans were waiting for an excuse to demonstrate some of these heinous behaviors. The cold and calculating killings of young Black males are happening on our watch just as they did during the civil rights movement with the killers claiming they are the victims.  Parents with Black children must face the fact that some Americans are angry that our country is being led by a President who is Black. It will take a major cultural change and a moral attitude adjustment in America to impact the racial injustices in this country. In the meantime, we must protect our children by educating them on Racial Profiling, Stand Your Ground laws, mass prison incarceration, voter disenfranchisement and all other racial injustices.