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39,013
Your Thoughts on Racism & Police Violence in America
by Causes
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  • Tammy
    Voted Yes
    06/04/2020
    ···

    I find it difficult to say yes or no to this broad question because I'm a white woman. The closest I've come to direct racism is when people's attitudes toward me completely changes upon hearing my "foreign sounding" last name. For example, suddenly all the openings one company had were full up for 6 weeks for a problem than needed fixed ASAP when I told the receptionist my last name. The next day I called again from a different number and gave only my first name. Suddenly the schedule was open again. And I've received threats because of my last name. But speaking directly to racism by police, I've definitely witnessed racist behavior by cops. Cops would drive by multiple times making a point to slow down and even point at us when I walked with black friends on public sidewalks. And I've been followed by security in a mall when with black friends. Once or twice I even had cops stop to ask me if I (the only white person in the group) needed help while they nodded toward my friends and then call me a name when I said the people I was with were my friends. So I've witnessed plenty of racism but I have the privilege of not being targeted directly because of my skin color. Also, while in college I heard many law enforcement students talk amongst themselves about how having a badge would allow them to target black people. Being a witness is not the same thing as being a target. It only means the racism was there in front of me and happening to people who were with me. I can't know the fear my friends felt, but I saw it and I saw why they felt it. I continue to see it. So I would say my "experience" was indirect because I was a witness not a target.

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