Monday, January 19, 2009

Holiday or not...

One never knows if this is a holiday or not.
Depends on where you are and who you are
dealing with. Actually, I guess it is a holiday
pretty much anywhere, but the question is,
who has it off.

I think it is a good day for school to teach
the importance of Martin Luther King jr.
Who he was, and how he handle his life
in the marches and etc. Always with
non-violence. But should schools have it
off and should it be called Martin Luther King
Day, I don't know. I think I would have been
more comfortable, if it was called Civil Rights Day.
As there were a lot more people who gave their
lives for civil rights.

I remember what the South was like before
Rev. King's protest started. I moved from R.I.
where we went to school with the colored (as they
were called at that time in R.I.) even had friends,
close friends who were colored. Then I moved down
to Miami Beach, Florida at 17 after high school, to
help my grandfather. He had a person who came in
to clean his house every week. Her name was Mildred.

In my ignorance, I almost got Mildred in great trouble.
I had taken the bus to Miami. And on that bus was Mildred,
so I sat with her, as we had become friends. The bus came
to a fast halt. The bus driver yelled back, "YOU CAN'T SIT
BACK THERE, COME UP FRONT." I turn around to see
who he was talking to. And then understood he was talking
to me, and also it dawn on me the terror look on Mildred's
face when I sat. She whispered to me, "please go sit up front".
I looked at her with a confused face, I guess, because she said
"please, I will explain later". So I got up and moved to the
front, and heard something to the tune of "damn, Northerners".
Mildred explain to me the next time she came, the way of the
South. I was in disbelief. And later I did notice, fountains that
said "whites only" and other places.

I left Florida about 5 months later. It was hard to believe that
people treated blacks like that. I am not going to tell you there
wasn't a difference between blacks and whites in R.I. But it wasn't
like that. It wasn't any difference than a Catholic family not wanting
their children marrying Jewish or any other religion for that matter.
Same with the Jewish mothers not wanting non Jewish daughter in laws.
Or Greek families not wanting non Greek in laws.
Never like the whites treated the blacks in the South. Thankfully,
California wasn't that way.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Wow! What a great post. I bet you left quite an impression on Mildred. I LOVE Martin Luther King and everything he has done for our great Country.