Sunday, October 02, 2005

The Little Things...

There was once a book called "It's the Little Things" and it detailed how the little things between blacks and whites make us distrustful of each other. They are little slights. One little slight is that I tend to believe that the humanity of African Americans is only grudgingly acknowledged by American society. Examples: Hurricane Katrina and the lack of a timely federal response. Former Secretary of Education Bill Bennett using African Americans as a hypothetical example of how abortion could cure the crime rate. Etc. But one little thing still bugs me. It is an honor delivered to different people in two different ways.

Ronald Reagan National Airport
John F. Kennedy International Airport
LaGuardia Airport

Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport

Notice the difference? About six months ago, the state of Maryland fought about how to honor the late Thurgood Marshall, and they finally came up with a plan to rename the BWI airport after the Supreme Court justice. But notice that they decided to basically keep the old name and tack on Marshall's name as an afterthought. Now is this something that will change the world? No. But in some parts of the black community, this is another thing to point to when we look at whether we are second class citizens in this country. It's the little things.


Anonymous said...


I usually don't leave comments at other's blogs, but I felt compelled to leave one hear.

It's funny that you mention the "slights" in respect to renaming of airports. I am sad to say that this is not a new phenomenom. In Jackson, MS (where I'm from) the same issue arose in the city council when it came time to rededicate the Jackson International Airport as the Medgar Evers International Airport.

The resolution was suggested by a black member of the city council. The full measure was never adopted because there was disagreement on whether to make the name Medgar Evers or a mixture of Jackson-Evers (the eventual name).

I can't say for sure what caused the dispute, but it is interesting that this continuously happens across the country. You can just look back to many state's refusal to acknowledge the MLK holiday. I know here in MS it is well known that for state employees MLK holiday is Robert E. Lee day.

So sad. We have a long way to go.

Bullet Proof Diva said...

You know I hadn't thought about that, wow. Excellent point.

Rhonda Henderson said...

higher ups at my alma mater didn't understand why i was so upset that there weren't any pictures of black people hanging in buildings around campus.

not the af-am center, the latino center, or the LBGT. but the financial aid office, or the registrar's office or the dining hall. damn, can't aunt jemima at least make it up? that still burns me up five years later.