Photo courtesy of findfreegraphics.com
What are the first words that come to your mind when you see this picture? I know it might be hard to admit to yourself, but try to be totally honest. If you happen to be brown, and are not originally from the south, these are some of the words that might possibly pop into your mind:
What if you suddenly began to notice this truck parked at your son's elementary school every day during drop-off time? What if one day you saw a cute little boy with spiky hair come out of that truck.....and then walk and join your son's first-grade class one morning?
It's clear that brown girl, who is not from the south, had two choices:
1.) Draw from every stereotype she's ever heard, breathe life into a hurtful symbol and allow it to continue to ignite hate. Find a subtle way to manipulate her kid into staying away from the child whose mother drives this vehicle. Pass the hate, fear, and distrust onto 6-year old son. Perpetuate a whole new generation of separation.
2.) Ask her kid to be nice to the spiky hair boy who always seems to sit alone. Her kid takes it to another level and gives his entire lunchbox to him one day. On grandparents day, brown girl's brown mom and brown kid share a table with spiky hair boy and his grandmother. After a while, the flag turns into a powerless, peeling, outdated, decal. And spiky hair boy and brown girl's kid give hope for a new future. One that is no longer defined by, or trapped in, the past of their mothers.
Can you guess what brown girl, who is not from the south, chose?