A couple weekends ago we were camping in the North East. We love to camp and this was a great little mini vacation, despite deluges of rain periodically. The kids and I are used to such things--my wife not so much, but I digress.
I had taken the younger kids on a day trip and we left the park about 5 p.m. due to storms rolling in. I headed back the 90 minute drive toward our campground location, but we needed to stop for supper. The kids are well trained to try and avoid chains as a general rule when we travel. We like to try out local places and they chose a small pizza place in the center of a small NH town. We went in and were greeted. Placed our order and sat down in a booth to relax and wait.
About 20 minutes later while we were eating, a van parked outside. Rob started grinning. I asked him what was so funny. He said 5 black people were getting out of the van to come inside and we would now be increasing the diversity of the entire restaurant population because it would now be almost 50/50
He was comfortable with it, but it brought me up short. It made me remember that my kids live, work and socialize every day in situations where they are not the majority. My city is diverse and the black community and the latino communities are very visible and present. But they are not the majority.
My kids obviously notice. And as part of the white majority, I obviously hadn't. I consider that in general, I am pretty racially aware. I don't believe in "color blind." I don't believe in not talking about racial issues. I make sure we are active in the communities which are my children's heritage. I have chosen participation in specific sports teams and clubs based on the racial diversity that my kids will find there.
But clearly, this is all still a work in progress--as is the work our country needs to do on racial equality.