Saturday, August 20, 2011

Chipping away

I have found my soapbox and am about to step up on it. Those who would like to avoid the talk, be my guest, I won't be offended.

Over the last week there were a series of hate speech and symbols sprayed in our community. This was the topic on "Star Newsmakers" Joe Brown and Randy Ertll with Brian Charles and Frank Girardot. This morning a forum took place at the Rose Bowl. Chief Sanchez shared more details about the cases and because he is a thoughtful man - some meaningful reflections. I'm sure others were thoughtful, too.

Pasadena has had continued if uncomfortable conversations around race. Not surprising since our local history includes roots in the U.S. /Mexican War and the Civil War.

What hasn't been discussed as often are other expression of bias, discrimination, and prejudice that seem to exist. While I might disagree or agree with what was said on Newsmakers or at the
forum this morning, if I were a lesbian, I might wonder where my community fits into this conversation. I've seen only peripheral acknowledgement re: homophobic graffiti. And yet the hate spewed is every bit as painful.

Perhaps it's my training as a teacher and as an anti bias facilitator that has me a bit more focused on the broader sense of "isms". Prejudice based on age, education, linguistic expression, orientation, and yes, racism share a common element of ignorance.

So while I might go to a discussion or two and heartily participate, I think much of my work is done here at my computer where I research and write about what I am learning of our shared history. It is my way of contributing to a different sort of conversation. One that offers yet another means to chip away at bigotry and hate.


  1. I haven't seen these symbols or heard of this. Was it in the paper?

  2. It was in the paper and on TV.
    Here are links to the story.