Who Gets to Say What’s True?

[Friends Meeting at Cambridge, January 1, 2017]

Saturday I saw “Fences.” And one line from the Denzel Washington (Troy) and Olivia Davis (Rose) movie, set in Pittsburgh in 1957, hit me just as hard in 2016 as had the same line in the staged version—which I’d seen in 2009. Troy and Rose are arguing about their teenaged son Cory’s future. Troy wants Cory to get a trade; Rose believes if he goes to college on a football scholarship he’ll be able to make his way. So she says something to the effect of, “You’re just being stubborn, Troy. Things are different (for people of color), now. There are more opportunities.” But as the story unspools, and we’ve spent some time within Troy and Rose’s shut-off-from-opportunity world, even the most clueless white person has to admit: Nope. Troy’s not being stubborn. Oppression was real in 1957. And, sadly, in 2017.

Which makes the Pew Research Center’s Study on Race and Inequality required reading. For my white brothers and sisters.

Join the Conversation

1 Comment

  1. Dear Patricia,

    Hi, there, Patricia, my so, so very For Always dearly special and awesomely precious soul sisterfriend who you’re For Always so, so very much!!!!! Sister, WOW, here, wow, wow, wow, wow and wow and wow, and a zillion wows here!!!!! What a very beautiful, absolutely fantastic blog post article this is here of yours, sisterfriend!!!!! I just so love this very, very much, Patricia!!!! The title of this brilliantly insightful blog post article is very true telling it like it is to use the old Quaker saying speaking such great truth to power in perfectly accenting, complementing, and adding to this very fine and excellent blog post article! Sister, I love the absolutely lovely picture here of the location of your so, so very blessedly pure in heart Friends Meeting at Cambridge!!!!!!! What a pretty building here with such greatly built architecture with this so cool full of spirit sign, sister!!!!! I just love this so, so much!!!!! Sister, I just so love, enjoy, and appreciate all of the great links here which you have very graciously and generously featured and included with this absolutely amazing article here, Patricia! I’ve not seen Fences yet but I so look forward to seeing this fine film. Sister, you are so right on here with your great point that oppression was real in 1957 which is the time frame for this movie and how you share and declare so wisely that oppression is still, sadly so, also very real in 2017. Sister, you have as usual as always featured and included such greatly important and informative links here with your astounding writing! I so appreciate how you have included and featured here the very accurate report from the Pew Research Center’s Study on Race and Inequality, sister!!!!!! Sister, I thank-you, thank-you, thank-you so, so very much, so, so very profusely, kindly, dearly, and deeply for featuring and including this very vitally and urgently important, very necessary to study and read article here with this marvelous link to it of yours, dear, dear precious Patricia!!!!!! Wow, I feel so, so very validated, acknowledged, and recognized by you, my so, so very right on, wondrously wonderful white woman, sister, and friend as a black woman with how you have placed the link to this very accurate report about the very plight of myself as a black woman and black person and the very plight of other black persons as our sisters and brothers, Patricia!!!!! You have validated, acknowledged, and recognized each and every one of us as black women and girls, and as black men and boys by featuring and including this necessary reading in your great link here!!!!! Thank-YOU so, so much, sister!!!!! Wow, you are so right, sisterfriend!!!! As it was very true in 1957 for blacks and other nonwhite persons that we were oppressed and discriminated against it is so very aggravatingly true that this oppression, racism, and discrimination is still very true for us in 2017, Patricia!!!!! Sister, despite this stark reality I for one as a disabled, indigent lesbian black woman will never ever give up on my very faith and hope!!!!! I will For Always have my very faith, expectancy of such hope and good, and my eternal positive optimism, Patricia!!!!! Sisterfriend, I for one think as a disabled, indigent lesbian black woman that even though these harsh realities can be very true and accurate for blacks and other nonwhite persons, still I somehow think that a good number of black people and other persons of color have and frame a narrative of negativity with having and framing for their lives a narrative of predicting negative outcomes a lot. I know that the terribly horrid situations of oppression, racism, and discrimination are very real for me and for other blacks and people of color yet I think with my very, very heart, and my very, very heart, mind, soul, and spirit with all that I have with all of my very being that they must try so, so very hard to have more of a narrative of positive optimism as I do that somehow someway with a lot of patience and hard work that will take some time that racism, oppression, and discrimination against us will gradually decrease over time. I for one will never ever give up on my very faith and hope with my eternal positive optimism, Patricia, and I aim to be a black Pollyanna and to For Always try so, so very hard to look for the good, my so, so very dearest and darling friend!!!!! I will never ever give up on you, dear, dear Patricia, and on other marvelous white persons expecting with such confidence and faith and belief in YOU, my friend, and other splendid white persons having such trust, faith, hope, and confidence that YOU and other white people have such a greatly and immensely abundant potential for and actual great good inside as people, and that you all can learn, heal, and grow as you all find yourselves and grow in your anti-racism and keen racial awareness. Despite racism, oppression, and discrimination against me and other blacks and people of color, I will For Always love YOU, Patricia, and other awesome white people as my sisters and brothers and our Sweet Spirit’s children, very, very especially YOU, my so, so very precious and special white sisterfriend, Patricia, and other right on, wondrously wonderful white women, for YOU, Patricia, and other super white women are my very, very heart, and also my very, very heartsblood, and my very, very lifesblood, and I just so, so very much love YOU, Patricia, and other white women and cherish you all and I think so, so very highly of YOU, sisterfriend and other white women as the so, so very dear, loving, kind, good, caring, sweet, and friendly people you all can be for certain!!!!!!! It is not only blacks and other people of color who are oppressed!!!!! It is very, very vitally urgently important and necessary that people also know, remember, and consider that white women and white girls are oppressed also by vile and perniciously pervasive sexism and misogyny, and very often are survivors of sexual abuse in all of its ugly manifestations, sexual harassment and sexual terrorism, and often face oppression and discrimination as well due to evil sexism and misogyny!!!!!! Live ain’t no crystal stair for you all as white women and white girls, Patricia. and each of you have such a cross to bear in your lives, too, just as blacks and nonwhite people do!!!!

    Sister, I so, so very much enjoyed reading and studying this remarkable Pew Research Center’s Study on Race and Inequality, Patricia. Sister, I am surprised by a finding of this study when it was stated that blacks with a bachelor’s degree are more likely than other blacks who have less education to think, say, and feel that blacks are worse off financially than white people at present. I have always thought that like with myself being college educated and with other black persons who have bachelor degrees that we thought that there was more opportunity for us as blacks and that we had more of a faith, hope, and somewhat more of an optimism for the present and future that opportunities were still available for us. Wow, I was very surprised by this finding in the study, Patricia!!!!! Sister, I feel differently than very many of the black people in the study who were found to be skeptical that our very special, precious, beloved, and blessed country will eventually change for the better in bringing about more racial equality, equity, fairness, and justice. I for one as a disabled, indigent lesbian black woman absolutely refuse to be skeptical about this, and I refuse to be cynical about this and to be cynical toward YOU, dearest, dearest Patricia, and toward other superbly super white people!!!!! Sister, YOU and all of you as super white people can count on me for sure to never ever give up my very faith, hope, and eternal positive optimism, and to never ever give up on YOU, sisterfriend, and on other white persons, and you all can count on me to have your backs in very, very delightfully and eagerly cheering for all of you and rooting for each and every one of you with all of my very, very heart, and my very, very heart and spirit!!!!! Wow, Patricia, wow!!!!! Yay!!!!!!! Yay for YOU, Patricia!!!!! Yay for our very friendship and sisterhood, Patricia!!!!! Yay!!!!! You are my very, very joy and blessing, Patricia, and I thank Spirit continually for YOU, Patricia!!!!!! I feel even better and brighter with even more cheer after reading this very uplifting, empowering, and enlightening blog post article with such sheer and blessed joy, and joyously responding with my very heartfelt, detailed, and thorough thoughts, ideas, and comments!!!!! Your magnificent blog post articles, other great writings and books, and all you do so, so very well in such a fine and excellent manner very diligently and conscientiously are my very, very joys and blessings also, Patricia!!!!! Yay!!!!!! Sisterfriend, please have such a totally terrific and a very thrilling Thursday, a wondrously wonderful rest of your week and weekend ahead, and may all of your days be so, so very especially blessed, Patricia!!!!! Patricia, Spirit so, so very much loves and cherishes YOU, my so, so very dearest and darling sister, and so do I!!!!!!! Yay yay yay yay!!!!!!

    Very Warmly and Sincerely For Always, my so, so very awesomely precious and dearly special soul sisterfriend Christian Quaker white woman who you’re For Always so, so very much, Patricia, with Such Peace and Love For You For Always, sister of mine, and with Such Blessings and Such Very Even More Blessings For You For Always, friend of mine,

    Yours For Always soul sisterfriend black woman and For Always in the very great spirit of unity and solidarity, Sherry Gordon in Iowa City, Iowa

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *