My assumption that my credentials and titles would shield me from racism were wrong. Well, I never really thought that but it sounded good. I’ve been a naysayer on the entire microaggression movement. For those who don’t know, microaggressions are derogatory slights or snubs (intentional or unintentional) that target people based solely on their marginalized group affiliation.
Back to the story. Despite my credentials and titles, I was the victim of microaggression. The funny thing is (not funny ha-ha) it happened twice…by the same person. First, he said it to me. I smiled and I carried on. Then, he said it again in front of three other people and again, I carried on.
I honestly don’t think this person has any ill-will towards me or any other black person but his inability to recognize what is appropriate and what’s not is disheartening. I am very disappointed how the entire thing unfolded. Not because of him, but because of me. I should have said something. I should have let him know that I am member of a marginalized group, and regardless of my educational attainment, I am still very much a part of that group. Am I a representative example of my group affiliation? I think not. The problem is, I am not representative of any particular group (in my own grandiose opinion).
Since you’ve read this far you must really want to know what he said. Well, I won’t keep you guessing. He said, “You think you’re black.” Then he said, “She think she’s black.”
Well, to my friend and colleague, who shall remain nameless (unless he reads this blog)…YOU ARE RIGHT…I AM NOT BLACK, I’M DIPPED IN CHOCOLATE!