Black Men in Public Spaces

Topics: African American, Black people, Race and Ethnicity Pages: 3 (1037 words) Published: March 11, 2005
When comparing my essay situation that I wrote about my dad's run in with racism to Staples essay, one could say that they are both similar and different. In general, their situations were similar because both incidents involved some form of racism. Staples story and my dad's story both took place in the 1980's. However, I believe these types of racism are still very much alive. The difference between Staples situation and my dad's was their responses and how they chose to handle their situations. My father's story, I felt displayed courage on his part. He didn't have to act a certain way, change himself, or adapt to his environment to fit in. He did what he needed to do and did not think twice about it. He walked into a diner full of people who stared at him as if he were from another planet. Yet he still went about his business and ordered his food while feeling the piercing stares burn through his flesh. Although he felt uncomfortable being the only Asian man in sight, he ignored the staring faces. The differences I found in their situations were that Staples coped with racism by, 'smothering the rage' he had to change who he was. This can be perceived in different ways. You can look at this and think that he was a coward who didn't want to deal with what was in front of him, or you can look at this and think that he was a smart person who had courage to find his own ways to cope. We may not all agree that Staples way of dealing with things is the correct way however, it was the way he chose. He taught himself to take precaution by, allowing room between people in front of him and himself when walking, when he felt that people were uncomfortable, he would, 'whistle melodies from Beethoven, Vivaldi, and other classical composers'. Instead of dealing with being misperceived as a killer, rapist, or murderer, he adjusted his daily way of life around others. I believe this type of racism towards young male men is common. I am a woman, and am afraid for my life...
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