As I was in line grabbing my afternoon cup of coffee I overheard the following conversation between a white guy and his black friend.
As I came up to the coffee line behind these two:
White Guy: "Did you really?"
Black Friend: "As a kid I did. I've been called it twice, and not for years, though."
White Guy: "That's rediculous. But at least racism really is much better nowadays, though. You have to admit that."
Black Friend: [long pause] "If by 'better' you mean there no longer public lynchings, then sure, things are certainly better."
White Guy: "Right. Well, no, what I meant..." Black Friend: "Just stop yourself."
I said they were friends, but that was basically an assumption. I should have described it as a conversation between a dumbass and his soon-to-be-former-friend. This has to rank up there with one of the dumbest things I've ever heard in my life. I love the assumption in this country that "better" is somehow akin to "good" or "solved" or even "equal." Yes, things may very well be better right now in America of the 21st Century, but it is quite a stretch, at least in my mind, to voice an opinion on the subject, particularly to someone who (whether they are your friend or not) knows significantly more on the topic than you would by virtue of him, you know, not being white and all. Sometimes its just better to just ask about someone else's experience and then just take their word for it. The kid deserved to get popped in the nose, on basic principle. I still can't believe I heard someone say that in this city. Stupid people just kill it for the rest of us sometimes.