The new informal Jim Crow

The new informal Jim Crow

Here is Jim Crow when I was a child in Florida. Blacks couldn’t go to white restaurants, motels, gas stations or bathrooms. They had something called The Green Book when traveling in the South of the USA. It showed where they could go.

I wish that I were making this information up. Yet I can’t to save my life. It’s because it was the reality.

Now I’m a person who can be the only so-called white at a dance party amongst blacks in the Caribbean. I can be the only white at a black barbecue in New Jersey and make a joke about my being a token white person there. Haha, they got the analogy since whites use to invite a black couple, just one, to their parties in the 1960’s to pretend to show inclusiveness.

Anyway, the new Jim Crow model is to simply marginalize the blacks. They don’t have the money to move into white neighborhoods and they are often looked upon suspiciously if they walk in a white neighborhood as if they are located there to rob, rape and murder.

So I said, cheeky me, to a black nurse while in rehab compound … Does this look white to you while pointing to my hand. I mean compared to white paper and white linen sheets.

She, of course, said no.

Then I told her that if I had known of any black communities in Sarasota, Florida, I would have gone to the colored bathroom since I’m colored. Then I would have drunk water from a colored water fountain. … Yes, I’m colored and not white one iota.

Then if a cop would have come to arrest me for disobeying Jim Crow rules, he could have watched out as my father was VP of a prestigious college and his lawyer friends from NY would come down in a flash to defend me in court — the fact that I am not white like KKK sheets, and that I feel sympathy for maligned and marginalized blacks.

Needless to say, the nurse was impressed with my stance. Yet that is not my problem now — the way that Jim Crow was back then.

It is the way that it is now. I can’t stand the lacks in opportunity and access to fair wages that many of these darker skinned people experience now.

Why, it’s the new Jim Crow and it is utterly ugly. The new style of Jim Crow is still not inclusive enough for me to endure it.

Sally Dugman lives in MA, USA




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