For weeks now, I have been sporadically editing my promised next post in the series on being a white woman in the African-American Hough neighborhood. My next topic was intended to address how living in white, small town Jefferson is similar to living in black, inner city Cleveland. After all, everybody’s excited about the WINdians and Cavs!
But Saturday Night Live captured the essence of what I wanted to say, and much more on Black Jeopardy this week. So I’m scrapping my bullet points to invite you to laugh and reflect with me. (Warning: mildly vulgar but hilarious language)
Truth is, day-to-day life in under-rated communities like Hough and Jefferson have more in common with each other than with the upper-class suburb where I grew up (also, they are Steelers fans). But many people from places like Hough and Jefferson are trained to ignore their shared realities, to see each other across a divide, and that segregation ultimately empowers our common enemies of wealth inequality and political disenfranchisement.
“It was good while it lasted, Doug.”
Slate has an even better explanation of what this skit gets right about the complicated relationship of race, class and identity politics. Enjoy, and let me know what you think!
By request, my next post is about what I teach my children about race. Then…I have some thoughts about workforce development and fair labor, and developing mobile apps for adult literacy. Stay tuned!