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Black and White


From a reader. Southerners know well how authentic this paradox is. Northerners, in my experience, can’t wrap their minds around it. But it’s true:

“When my parents were married, my great-grandfather gave them the family
maid as a wedding present. Can you believe that…1960, and the man was
giving my parents another human being. Her name was Emma — Aunt Emma,
and she raised me to be what I hope is a good person.

“This is the same great-grandfather who would leap out of his easy chair
in apoplexy when Family Feud’s Richard Dawson would kiss the black women…and then kiss the white ones.

“Yet every evening, until the day he died, he and an elderly black
gentleman, who lived next door, would meet out in the tool shed, listen
to the ballgame or whatever on the radio, talk over the events of the
day, and drink Jack Daniels and Mountain Dew (Mountain Jacks).

“When he died, he left quite a sum of money to his next door neighbor.
Why? Well, because they were best friends.

“He was a strange man. But aren’t we all.

Thanks for your story and for reminding us that none of us are black and
white, so to speak.”


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