Yesha Callahan

I Am Not Color Blind

It’s funny how alot of people nowadays claim to be ‘color blind’. I always hear cliches thrown around about how ‘love sees no color’, ‘everyone is created equal’ and the like. Well let me be the first to admit, that no, I am not color blind. The color lines for me were clearly defined at a very young age. If we lived in a utopian society, of course those cliches or sayings would ring true, but unfortunately that is not the case.

If I was color blind, I wouldn’t notice the looks I receive by other men and women, when I’m out with my friend Jeff, who happens to be white, and we’re playfully holding hands.

If I was colorblind, I wouldn’t notice how certain schools in the Maryland school system with a larger number of black students have some of the lowest test scores in the state.
If I was colorblind, I’d actually would believe that there’s no such thing as “Racial Profiling” and I could look pass the fact that my friends who drove down from New Jersey, weren’t only pulled over because they were black and driving a pretty expensive car, but I’d actually believe the excuse the cop used, “Ma’am, your license plate isn’t visible”. I guess that little speckle of dirt that was on a bright yellow NJ plate really caused him some problems.
If I was color blind, I wouldn’t notice that on a recent trip to Atlanta, as I was checking in to my 5 star hotel, that the customer service I received from the front desk attendants, who happened to be black as well, was garbage in comparison to the customer service that the 3 three white men in suits who followed behind me received, along with their complimentary limo ride around Buckhead, which no one made mention to me.
If I was color blind, I wouldn’t take notice on the fact that I’ve lived in my current house since August, but my neighbors haven’t as much as raised the heads to acknowledge my existence even when I speak to them, but when my grandmother visited a few months ago and they noticed she was ‘one of them’, they were all to eager to help her out in my yard.

So, my question is, do I need to get rid of the color I have, in order to be ‘color blind’? Because it definitely seems that the majority of the people I know who are always hollering that they’re colorblind tend to lack melanin and would never have issues like the ones I pointed out about. Ponderous indeed.
Emily King- Color Blind

  1. April 14, 2008 - Reply

    great post.

    I think the problem with racism is that people who are racist, don’t know that they are. I notice what you are talking about, but I’m sure it’s people like you and I who are not the ones to worry about…


  2. April 18, 2008 - Reply

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  3. April 24, 2008 - Reply

    great topic.

    I have a feeling that i will be blogging on this topic in the near future. Ironically, I caught School Daze a few weekends ago and Alicia Keys video is inspired by the movie. And Oprah staged some situations where folks responses was utterly racist. I think these are all signs compelling to discuss the issue. I digress. I love the site’s new look.


  4. April 29, 2008 - Reply

    1. I’m sorry I’ve been M.I.A. from the blogosphere so this comment is a LATEPASS.

    2. I love that you seem to write about any and everything.

    3. You were speaking some truths in this post.

    4. I love Emily King and I love that song. *Sigh* The tragic mulatto.

  5. May 26, 2008 - Reply

    Not sure I agree with your logic here. I call myself color blind, but I did not live the experiences you did, but neither have you lived mine. Both my parents were born in Italy, one dark (year-round tan), the other white as a ghost. My brother and I took after Mom, and my sis after Dad.

    I truly love the rainbow of skin colors, and I say the more variety in society the better. I truly believe skin color has nothing to do character, capability, potential, etc. I have lived in several different countries which has only reinforced my view. It hurts me that the US society is not advanced enough to see it that way overall. That’s why I moved to Miami – that’s the one major city in the US where racial tension is the lowest (in my opinion, of course).

    I respect your right to feel the way you do, let me assure you, I feel sincere and genuine pain and hurt from the experiences of yourself and billions of others in the US and around the world. It’s my right to feel this way, and I don’t need anyone to tell me that they don’t need my sympathy, because I will not change how I feel. I practice what I preach every day of my life, and just because my skin is white does it not make it dubious to call myself color blind. As a true color blind guy, I cannot worry about what “race” is dominating color blind assertions, I am too busy living my values to care. I am too busy treating everyone with equality. My skin is white, but I don’t feel white – I don’t feel any color, if anything, I feel ALL colors. Simultaneously.

    So, thanks to you, maybe I’ll just invent a new word for myself, to distinguish from an (evidently) overworn cliché – I’m not color blind afterall, I am “all-colors” – inclusivity until I die. Do you see my point? Just because I was not subjected to the same experiences as you were because of race, does not mean I will change my innate equal love for all races and all colors on the rainbow. If race is truly not an issue to someone, then they need to behave accordingly or else it’s obviously not sincere.

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