Unpacking My Racism

12 Jul

I have always said that racism is in the water. Whenever a white person declares indignantly, “I’m not a racist”, I have to laugh. Being raised white almost anywhere on the planet ingrains racism into our being. This week I saw how true that was for myself. I looked in the mirror and had to come down off my high horse. I am no exception.

A Visitor

I was kayaking one beautiful morning this week on Laguna Bacalar where I live and met a young couple sitting with their toddler on a dock near my house. We began talking in Spanish, because after all we’re in Mexico. When I realized that the man was translating our conversation for his wife, I asked them where they were from. The answer was, San Diego (California USA).

Sunrise on Laguna Bacalar

Our conversation continued with them asking me questions about Bacalar, and I then committed what is referred to as a micro aggression. I asked this brown skinned woman again where she was FROM.

Our Dock

I’ve been to San Diego. I was in awe of its perfect climate, big homes, flower filled streets and high cost of living. I guess my racist brain could not imagine this brown-skinned family being from such a white, wealthy place. I discovered that she was Philippina, which is besides the point. She was from San Diego.

We’re All In This Together

Seeing my unconscious assumptions is what unpacking racism looks like. Processing the immediate shame and embarrassment is important, only NOT with a person of color. My black and brown friends do not want to hear about my racism. They already know. My prayer is that seeing my stupidity will help me be less stupid next time. I will however make different mistakes, cuz that’s what it means to be human in this world.



8 Responses to “Unpacking My Racism”

  1. Emilie July 12, 2020 at 4:39 pm #

    I have done similar things. I would say on the racism spectrum I’m quite low, but it’s still there. How could it not be? I was raised in a white neighborhood reading history books that glorified wars against Indians and talked about slavery as though it were just casual.
    I try to work on myself nearly every day. Layer upon layer upon layer and so it continues.


  2. Jack Scott July 13, 2020 at 3:30 am #

    It’s easily done but what really counts is where it comes from.


    • afish25 July 13, 2020 at 8:10 am #

      I’m not sure I understand. My mother used to say, “the road to hell is paved w good intentions “


  3. Karen Hodgens July 13, 2020 at 7:38 am #

    You aren’t alone! I’ve Done exactly that. Ah well, all we can do is see it (can’t fix what you can’t see).


    • afish25 July 13, 2020 at 8:08 am #

      Yup, and sharing my stupidity helps me not feel ashamed of it.


  4. Pat Nash July 13, 2020 at 8:13 am #

    Beautiful and so on point.


    • afish25 July 13, 2020 at 8:28 am #

      I am wanting to be more vulnerable in my life.


Hey hey what have you got to say!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


A fine WordPress.com site


A topnotch WordPress.com site

Emilie Vardaman

travel and random thoughts

midwife87505's Blog

A great WordPress.com site

A Dead Kennedy

: A journal of a very slooow marathon swimmer

The Soulful Word

Intuitive copywriter + content creator: word whispering magic for personal brands

View From Casita Colibrí

gringa musings from a rooftop terrace in Oaxaca

Your Hand in Mind

Musings of a human factors engineer after her brain was released...

Our House In...

Living where we are

Surviving Yucatan

Smoothing out Mexico's rough spots.

A Boy and Her Dog

Traversing the Border between Butch and Transgender

Surviving Mexico

Adventures and Disasters

Just Another Moment in Paradise

Snippets of an Adventure's Life in Cozumel, Mexico

Perking the Pansies

Jack Scott's random ramblings

Mexico Retold

There's more to Mexico than meets the media

WordPress.com News

The latest news on WordPress.com and the WordPress community.

The Amazon Express

From the most distant source to the sea.

Biketrash Holiday

Adventures on Two Wheels!

%d bloggers like this: