To answer those important questions, we decided to use Goggle to take a “snapshot” of the state of racial relations in our country. We selected October 19, 2017, just a day before we wrote the sentence you’re reading right now. We didn’t want to know what happened in 1868, or 1954, or 1973. We wanted to know what was going on this week. Here’s what we found:
Pittsburgh, PA A black woman is beaten with a brick by some white people who are angry over a racial incident that occured at a public elementary school.
Gainesville, FL A white supremacist rally is held at the University of Florida.
Atmore, AL Another black man is executed by the state of Alabama.
Boston, MA A student rally is held to protest a pair of on-campus racist incidents.
Houston, TX A white couple driving a pickup truck, pull up beside a black woman at an intersection. After hurling racist insults at her, they follow her into a neighborhood and ram her car with their truck, after which they immediately leave the scene.
These incidents literally happened yesterday (or, by the time you’re reading this, a year ago, or fourteen months ago, or eighteen months ago). They happened in the South and they happened in the North. They may have happened in your hometown. They’re not the way things were. They’re the way things are.
We should point out that there’s nothing special about October 19. Go ahead and pick another date. It could be February 18 or July 21 or December 5. Do a Goggle search on the day you select. Type in “racist incidents” and enter the date you picked along with the current year. You’ll likely find a comparable number of stories.
From “Black and White: Disrupting Racism One Friendship At A Time” by Teesha Hadra and John Hambrick