A White and Black Confrontation

A White and Black Confrontation

Los Angeles, California — I was at the corner of Wilshire and Western on Thursday, September 11, 2008. The famous Wiltern Theater is at the corner of Wilshire and Western also. The Wiltern has singers and music bands from all over the world come and play, and the Wiltern also has plays and musical plays that are held there also. It was a nice day outside and it was 5 something pm. At the corner of Wilshire and Western there are bus stops and the Subway train. Standing at a bus stop was a homeless black man he had Carmel brown skin, he looked like he was in his forties, a full beard about 4 inches long, blue jean pants, and a blue jacket.

I have seen this homeless man walking around various parts of the city before. This time he was standing there and it looked like he was waiting on the bus. He was talking to himself also. Then this white guy just so happen to be less than 30 feet away. The white man had blond hair that semi yellow, pinkish white skin, looked like he was in his forties, shorts, and a black jacket.

The black guy looks at him and stares at him and starts calling him a peckerwood. The peckerwood is a racial epithet that is used against whites. The white guy started arguing back letting the black guy know he was not afraid. Then the white crossed the streets along with me and other people.

I felt bad for the white guy it had to be humiliating for him to get called a peckerwood in front of so many non whites. At the same time it was impressive to see that he would not back down and remain silent. As I walked and reflected upon what I had just saw, I said to myself that many blacks before the civil rights movement of the 1960s went through this type of humiliation everyday. What that white man experienced that day was not an everyday occurrence for him. Wherefore, for blacks that was an everyday occurrence to hear whites call you a Nigger and other humiliating names in public.

In this case the white guy said something back to the black guy. But during those days blacks who said something back to whites would be threatened, beaten, arrested, or killed. To be called a racial name or rude names causes a Turning feeling inside of your stomach.

About 30 minutes later I went back to the corner and crossed the street, and as I stood at the steps of the subway the white guy came walking by. I stopped him and said excuse me, I saw what happened between you and that man, and I am sorry that you had to go through that. I then said that man is homeless, and has a lot of problems in his life, and has had some unpleasant experiences in this country that makes him that way.

The white guy said you know I had some problems earlier today with some gang members by my house so I not in the mood to be bothered with other people like that man. We talked a little more he was very friendly we sad our good byes and went our separate ways.
I feel that by me letting him know that some one did care about his well being regardless of his ethnicity it helps him see — that not all blacks and mixed race people who are mixed with black are bad. 

There was a side of me also that was thinking about being a mixed race man. When I first saw these two men arguing there was a moment when I felt awkward. I felt like I am mixed with white and black, and here are two men one black and one white arguing. I did not want to take sides either. I reflected on that situation a little more when I was headed home, and I understood both the hidden anger of the black and why he did not like the white man and maybe whites in general.

I understood the white man feelings of why are you attacking me verbally I have done nothing to you. The black man had experienced a lot of racial discrimination in America at the hands of whites socially. I being a mixed race man have suffered the same racial discrimination because my phenotype (physical appearance) shows visible signs of black ancestry.

At the same time I understand what it is like to be seen as a type of white person — because of showing visible signs of white ancestry. Many blacks feel that those who are mixed race people who are called light skin blacks think that they are better — because their skin is lighter due to white ancestry, biracial, or mixed with another ethnic group.  

Blacks who view mixed race people this way see those mixed race people as a type of white people in characteristics. Examples mixed people always want to be in positions of power over blacks, they think they are better just like whites think they are better than blacks and other non whites, mixed people feel superior to blacks, etc these are just some of the opinions that blacks have of mixed race people. (who race mixed with black and white or black and some other ethnic groups but especially those mixed with black and white).

Whites on the other hand view mixed race people like myself as black, see us as members of the black race and all of the unpleasant stereotypes that blacks have are transferred to the mixed race people. So I understand both the positions of whites and blacks. Understanding them both helps me be more neutral and more of a peace maker.

  1. mike

    The bum was absolutely wrong and without justification. It should not even be a decision for you. You shouldn’t even have to think about it. Remaining neutral is wrong in this case.

  2. Chance

    How was remaining neutral wrong, in the end no one got hurt, and both men went their separate ways.

  3. mike

    It was wrong to have a neutral position, even though no action was called for. Your view should not have given any weight to the bum’s side at all. There was nothing at all to say for him.

  4. Chance

    All I said was that the bum had issues that’s all.

  5. Simple minded, rural and inbred. Poor excuses for homosapiens. Diet Consists of roasted racoon and roadkill. usually has around 12 children, all named cleetus, britney or clancey. Lives in trailers or shacks. often mistaken for game. the combined IQ of a family of hillbilly’s often challenges the IQ of the raodkill they eat, which is approximatly how many teeth they have (less then 5)

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