CHICAGO — It is said that your perception is your reality. This truth is more important to understand than ever since some of us are living in a time when reality is skewed by perceptions shaped by falsehoods from people in power.
Donald Trump rode into the White House by pushing the idea that Muslims have a propensity toward terrorism, that African-Americans live in crumbling ghetto war zones, and that Latinos are illegal immigrants who bring crime to communities.
If you happen to fall into any of those groups, this stuff gets into your head, even when you try hard to shut it out.
Not long ago I was walking out of Walmart with a cart full of goods and the greeter, an elderly white gentleman, stopped me to check my receipt and inspect my cart.
“Why me? Why not the white guy behind me or the little old white lady who cruised out in front of me?” I thought to myself. “Is it because of my brown skin and brown hair? Do I just look like someone who would try to sneak a few items through?”
Something similar happened at a different store last month. I was rolling my cart down the aisle and an older white lady was, seemingly out of nowhere, super rude and condescending to me.
Maybe she was just a jerk. Maybe she was just having a bad day. But I had to wonder if she felt like she could bully me because she was white and I’m not.
When you have experiences like these there are two options: 1) Feel bad about others for, potentially, having discriminated against you or 2) Feel bad about yourself for thinking…
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