Sticks and stones

David Sutton, Sports Editor
David Sutton, Sports Editor

“Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me.”

This was what I said as a youth, when I did not feel like bashing some kid’s head in when he talked about me.

Today I use the term much less because I have learned, for the most part, to ignore the things people say. But what I cannot ignore are racial slurs said around me.

At the University of La Verne it seems as if I am supposed to laugh at and accept the slurs with a smile. Wrong.

I feel that even if a person hates black people, they should have enough respect not to say these types of things around me or other black people.

The so-called friends I have do not even give me the respect I deserve.

When I hear one student refer to a basketball game as a “bunch of jungle bunnies running around,” it makes me angry, but what can I do?

“Where’s my million dollar nigger when I need him?” asked a white ULV student while playing a Super Nintendo baseball game with me.

I refuse to resort to violence in situations like this because it is not worth the trouble. When I was a child it was no problem to punch someone in the eye for saying things like that.

Labeled. All people in this country have been labeled. Unfortunately, as a black man, I have been cast in a negative light by the television media and members of society.

No matter how much I change or what type of degree I earn, I will still be a thief, drug dealer or ignorant to a large number of people.

It kills me to have someone ask me if I want to hear a black joke and then when I say no, they try to justify it by saying it is real funny.

I get the dumb comments from every one. A white female student once asked me if I was from Africa and once suggested that a not-so-well-dressed young black lady was from Compton. Why?

Many people accept blacks fully for who they are, while others only accept them partially. “They are OK to a point.”

Black people are “good” if they are working hard or are educated. If they are not educated, do not have a job or have been in jail, they become a dumb nigger or any other negative term someone can think of.

Parents can be misleading too. They can tell their children to treat all people equally and that all people are the same, but as soon as their child wants to have a relationship with someone of a different color, it is not acceptable.

I have my negative thoughts about people, but I have developed these thoughts after I have known them and had some type of experience with them. I try my best not to judge a book by its cover, and I try my best not to judge a person by his or her skin color.

These days people have a problem with how to refer to different races. Is it Latino, Mexican or Hispanic? Is it Oriental or Asian American? Is it black or African American? I am confused. But I do know that “spic,” “nip” and “nigger” are not the ways to refer to them.

The words “white boy” come out of my mouth quite often. One day I was talking to a white friend and he told me that he did not like that term. He felt it was offensive. I felt really stupid because I knew I had said those words around him before. Now I refrain from saying that in front of him.

The looks, comments and “I got my eye on you” feeling is the feeling I get sometimes walking, around this, for the most part, great campus.

People need to take a walk through Miller Hall and observe how the employees treat individuals. They treat people like humans. They are nice and treat people the same. I feel comfortable talking to any one of them.

I know that it is hard to change people and their beliefs and I am not trying to do that. All I am saying is that people need to respect one another. So save your black jokes and black comments for someone who wants to hear them, because I do not.

David Sutton, Sports Editor
David Sutton
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