Between the Lines

Random reflections from the youth in a juvenile correctional facility.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Racism and Prejudice

Have you ever experienced racism or prejudice for the color of your skin, your beliefs, or your lifestyle (behaviors)? Write a paragraph on what you experienced and how you felt about it.

One day when I slept over at my friend’s house, his grandma was telling him that she don’t want me to sleep over because black people steal. They were talking in Spanish, so at first I didn’t understand what was going on. I felt real disrespected when he told me what she said. However, I let it go and forgot about it. CW

I experienced people talking about my race just for the simple fact that they were having problems with people who were the same race as me. I felt very sad and angry because nobody should talk about anybody’s race or anything else that could be considered racism. JL

This one time I got called white trash. It made me mad and really upset. He swung on me and I just walked away. I knew that was cause I am part Mexican so I know that he did not know what he was talking about. GD

Plenty of times when I went to the store I experienced racism or at least felt it. One time I went to this mini market run by Asians. When I got in the store the owner just stared at me. As I walked around the store he kept following me like I was trying to steal something. I felt that the only reason he was doing this was because I was black. MB

I can’t say I’ve been through something like that because it’s not like that where I am from. The day I got locked up the cops hittin’ me because of my skin color. They did not like me cause I was Hispanic and I was from north Philly, but I know I am not a bad person because I did good. Just because I am from a bad part of Philadelphia people shouldn’t have the right to judge people. ML

It was this one day in school when I was home. This white boy called me a Spic and I was so angry that I just snapped on him and really hurt him and got locked up for him. In some way I felt disrespected and that is one thing I never liked cause I never even talked to the boy. AG

I never went through racism. I only was only called fat cause of my weight. Some people don’t like my lifestyle but they don’t set or show any disrespect. So I can say I never was put in a situation like that other than my weight and name calling. TB

Yes, I have witnessed racism. It was when I was in elementary school and a new boy came to my class. He said his family was from Virginia and they had a lot of farms and stuff and then one day this black boy my class came to my elementary teacher and told her that the boy from Virginia was calling him a bad name and the teacher said what word was it and they said the N***** word and she asked the boy did he say it and he said yes. I got it from my dad and ever since that I get extremely mad when I hear people on TV calling people the N word. MR

No, I have never experienced racism or prejudice, but I can say because of my behavior from when I was young. When I was little I used to do bad things and get locked up. The cops always brought me back home to my house. People in my neighborhood used to tell their kids not to play with me and that is how I got judged about my behavior. But, you see, when I got older and became one of those chill and fall back bull, I guess that’s when people in my old neighborhood changed their thoughts about me. Some neighbors always did like me. SB

I felt bad because I’d only see people calling me names. Also that is rude when other people hear it. Personally I wouldn’t say that to another person and my opinion. My parents wouldn’t like that either. WC

Yes, I have somebody called me a spic and I was about to hit that person but I walked away. I have it of my beliefs. Some people don’t like the way I do things. I don’t like the way people said this to me. JK

I have experienced racism. I didn’t have it bad, but people used to look at me like I’m some drug dealer because of the way I dress. They don’t even try to get to know a person to see for themselves how some of the Black people get. They just make racist assumptions about the way Black people acted. I don’t think that’s right and I don’t like that. JA

I have lived a life free of racism. I get along with everyone. I hope my life keeps going this good. The world would be a much better place without racism. DM

Yes, I have experienced racism a lot before in my life. People say you’re just a dumb white boy, you will amount to nothing. People underestimate others because of their skin color. I felt real bad. I felt that no one really cared about me. They just cared when I got locked up. NC


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