… Times have changed. New York City bus drivers do not bat an eye when I get on a bus. My fellow passengers do not look up. The lifts on virtually all buses work perfectly fine. Bias is rare. Is this proof I now live in a city akin to Criptopia? In a word no. I am looking for a place to live. I called a dozen apartment buildings over the last few weeks and quickly learned the stock answer to my question about a wheelchair accessible unit is no. None are available, the waiting list is 3 to 5 years and they are not taking any more names to add to the list. The message is not subtle—my crippled ass is not welcome. Essentially 99% of the apartments are not accessible. It is these basic forms of exclusion that are deeply problematic and can and do ruin lives. By basic I refer to accessible housing and accessible mass transportation. This remains a formidable challenge in my life and the lives of others that use a wheelchair to navigate the world. Yes, I can get on a NYC bus and many other buses in major urban cities across the nation. But the vast majority of homes and buildings remain grossly inaccessible. So as I prepare to move I am reminded my existence is still not valued.
earth days was da worst days now we sip spring water when we thirstay lol a lil earth day humor
Normality is a paved road: It’s comfortable to walk, but no flowers grow on it.
African-Americans avoiding eye contact has a history that goes back to slavery. It was socially unacceptable for a slave to make eye contact with a white man in the Antebellum South. Many whites back then felt if a Negro “eyeballed him” it was a sign that they thought they were equal to a white man and had no respect for him. In Jim Crow America, making eye contact was a social crime that could lead to a black person being lynched. And during the Civil Rights period and afterward, a black person could be arrested just for looking a police officer in the eyes.
Today African-Americans still regard making eye contact with a negative connotation even when interacting with each other. On the streets in inner city neighborhoods making eye contact is often seen as a sign of aggression and hostility. Any eye contact with a stranger in the ghetto can easily turn into an argument, escalate into a fight and lead up to murder. So many African-Americans, out of fear for their saftety, keep their eyes down and look away when they communicate with other brothers and sisters in the neighborhood….
These misunderstandings about nonverbal social cues have prevented African-Americans from getting jobs or keeping jobs, networking effectively in school, or socializing outside of the black community. Moreover it has prevented brothers and sisters from succeeding in the world of work. While social cues like eye contact and smiling are considered normal in White society, they can get someone killed in the inner-city.