Thursday, March 12, 2009

Random thoughts from a loading zone....

Just before my daughter turned 13, Barak Obama was sworn in as President .... I remember Sarah asking/stating as only a tween can, "Why are they making such a big deal about him being African-American, his MOM's WHITE". The political incorrectness of a child. The simplicity of the statement.

This tied in with some smaller news segments that had caught my eye. A local Doctor had his DNA created as a piece of wall-art, only to discover after 50 years of life there was no "African" in his background. He and his brother raised as black-men in the south, Negro on the birth certificate, overcoming the obstacles of being a minority, living with the changes the civil rights movement created, proud to have a president represent them in the white house, discover they are Caucasian & Native American. Somewhere along the road the Native American, became Colored, became Negro... hmmm

Tiger Woods returning to the pro-circuit after surgery. I remember his frustration years ago when reporters tried to label him as being "African" with an "Asian" mother. Tiger Woods is an star athlete, one we should be proud is also an American. He brought to me the absurdity of our government forms with no box saying Multi-racial or better yet none of your business.

So back to my daughter, she wants President Obama to be her President, not the African-American one. I tried to explain how proud a community is when one of there's is the first... doesn't matter who or what, Kennedy was the first Catholic president. If it was a woman, but all I get is why are they making such a big deal about it...

He's my President, too. The logic of a tween.

So my daughter, now that I've been able to put all these fragments into one file on my mental hard-drive, here is my answer:

We elected our first African-American family to the White House. The Obama Family is proud of there culture, history & background. They have melted together Hawaii & Illinois, and now Washington D.C., to create a true American Fusion.

Tiger Woods has become non-racial, we celebrate the birth of his children as international future stars. Part of that elite Jet-Set world that allows supermodels & super-athletes to co-exist with private planes and huge yachts. Only someone with no life wastes time trying to label and divide stars into categories. Like a clear night sky just look up and admire the stars.

And the lesson from the doctor's DNA, don't be quick to judge or label. Do not allow other people to label & limit you. Don't allow the exterior impression cloud your judgement.

I hope that as the older generation "gets it" it will not be discussed as much. As my generation moves up the ladder, it will be thought of less... and your generation will laugh when you run across official forms with a spot for "race/ethnic background" you have the courage to say "none of your business" or at least check "other" and say HUMAN.

Thank you Eartha Kitt, for reminding me of this.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ok, not a big blugger. Life and distractions get in the way. But, I need to get this thought down. I am planning my Daughter's Bat Mitzvah, invitations are out, RSVP's are coming in. My G-d-mother called, she may not be able to attend. This was my father's B.F.F. big time. She was around before I was born, and has stuck around after my father's passing. In many ways she has been there to keep my laughing at what my dad would have thought/said/done. She was not his best friend for life, it's lasted almost 20 years since his death.

She is flying to Israel. With all the talk of a ground invasion, with rockets flying in & bombs being dropped. She's taking a flight to make "chocolate chip cookies" for her grandchildren. They're trying to kill us, we'll survive....let's eat ! A new take, on an old joke.

I have started to forget what it felt like to live here, in Los Angeles/Long Beach during the King riots. I am too young to remember the Watts riots. I have not forgotten what it felt like on 9-11. I have not forgotten the Uniforms running in to the buildings as the sane people ran out. Here I am watching a not so little, gray haired grandmother....hopping on a half empty plane, while others are attempting to flee ... just to reassure her family "Grandma's Here". No matter what language she says it in.