Thursday, June 19, 2008
Why Obama didn't win Somerset County
So I decide to stop in Rockwood for dinner/lunch at this cool little shop area that houses a pizza place, a coffeeshop, and a ice cream store all under one roof. I decide I might want a shot of esperesso for the next 50 miles, so hoping for the best, I ask for a shot of espresso. I start chatting it up with the barista, a friendly middle aged lady with a young daughter helping out around the store.
So we're chatting it up, talking about how I'm biking to D.C. And how there all these great things to see there. While originally from Rockwood, she moved with her husband to the Arlignton area for a few years. We're chatting about the museums, Arlignton cemetery, Jefferson's home, when she drops something completly out nowhere. Here's her exact quote:
"I wouldn't want to live in DC now, with all the blacks there and that."
I was dumbfounded, she didn't even bat an eye upon saying it, to her saying that was along the same lines of talking about the Smithsonian. I wanted to tell her that it's not because they're black, it's because they're living in poverty. It's because they've had a screwed up family life. I wanted to break out charts and graphs. I wanted to tell her that I've known plenty of great black people over the years. I just wanted to do something, but in that moment all I could say was "hm."
I don't think I could blame her for saying that, it's probably all she's ever heard in her town growing up. Unfortunately, the sins of our forefathers are still with us today. Not just with her, but certianly in my own life too.