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My Broken Language


A Pulitzer Prize–winning playwright tells her lyrical coming of age story in a ...
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Do you agree that non-white citizens face more hurdles than their white counterparts?

Created: 01/06/22

Replies: 15

Posted Jan. 06, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 2754

Do you agree that non-white citizens face more hurdles than their white counterparts?

The author is keenly aware of the disparity between the lives of white and non-white Americans. Do you agree that non-white citizens face more hurdles than their white counterparts? At what point in your life did you realize that this disparity existed? What steps have you taken or would like to take to ensure a more equitable existence? 


Posted Jan. 06, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
PinkLady

Join Date: 01/22/18

Posts: 110

RE: Do you agree that non-white citizens...

Absolutely. I have known it for a long time but recent readings have made me much more aware of how prevalent it still is. My goal once Covid slows down is to volunteer with the Hispanic community in the city we recently moved to.


Posted Jan. 06, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
kimk

Join Date: 10/16/10

Posts: 538

RE: Do you agree that non-white citizens...

I definitely agree. I think I've always been aware to some extent - I clearly remember incidents when I was in elementary school, mostly because my mom was clearly racist (and still is, for that matter). But I think I've become more aware of how embedded discrimination is over the past few years due to the increased conversation surrounding the issue. Before someone explained what exactly "what privilege" meant, my response probably would have been "I'm not privileged!" Now I know better. Other than trying to educate my peers (which generally hasn't gone all that well) and making sure to vote accordingly, I'm not sure how best to create a more equitable society. I'll be curious to see what others post here.


Posted Jan. 06, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Maggie

Join Date: 01/01/16

Posts: 334

RE: Do you agree that non-white citizens...

Yes many more hurdles. So obvious from the news each day! What have I done? In my town we have many Hispanics. Years ago they just came to harvest fruit and then left. Then at one point they came and stayed. They have opened shops and are very much a part of our town. Their kids went to school with my boys. Some of my boys friends married Hispanic girls. I think of all of them as friends. They work at all the businesses in town. They have opened businesses. This morning I woke to 3 feet of snow. As I was out shoveling a Hispanic neighbor that I had not met yet came over with his snowplow and dug me out! Would my white neighbors? I do not think so! I always welcomed our Hispanic population.


Posted Jan. 06, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
cathyoc

Join Date: 04/26/17

Posts: 140

RE: Do you agree that non-white citizens...

As a teacher for decades in rural Southern and urban Southwestern schools I saw the advantages that white students, including my own children were allowed. It takes acknowledging ingrained practices to change practices. I would love to live in a society that would accept and value all children.


Posted Jan. 06, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
bettiet

Join Date: 03/11/20

Posts: 7

RE: Do you agree that non-white citizens...

Unfortunately I think this is the case. Centuries of discrimination have prevented many people from reaching their full potential. I think I was an adult (and not that long ago) before I realized that many of these hurdles could have been prevented, and were caused by society, not by fate or choice or personal inadequacies. What steps have I taken? Nothing dramatic, currently trying to include more books by POC so I have a better understanding of these hurdles and how they can impact people through many generations. I speak out when I can.


Posted Jan. 06, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
paulak

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 231

RE: Do you agree that non-white citizens...

In most cases, yes. This is such a huge challenge, I fear I lack the knowledge and credibility to answer it properly. I will add that I do think it all comes down to people interacting with people one on one. In other words, when Quiara was at Yale, feeling so apart - especially financially - compared to the majority of students, the events that occurred to bring people together where they could frankly discuss their views and backgrounds made a big difference in one culture gaining more understanding of another.


Posted Jan. 07, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
melanieb

Join Date: 08/30/14

Posts: 243

RE: Do you agree that non-white citizens...

I agree that non-white citizens face more hurdles. I try to remember and encourage others to remember that we all have potential to overcome something so we all have value.


Posted Jan. 11, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
louisee

Join Date: 06/29/15

Posts: 137

RE: Do you agree that non-white citizens...

I agree non-white citizens tend to have it harder going through life. I like what Maggie had to say about her town and Hispanic citizens. As my sons got older they realized how different nationalities were treated and saw how whites got away with a lot more which informed me. In my first few jobs out of college I observed how not all people were treated fairly. And now working with children I work on treating each students without prejudice.


Posted Jan. 11, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
cindyr

Join Date: 05/25/21

Posts: 11

RE: Do you agree that non-white citizens...

I agree, but I have to say I see a shift, albeit a small one, at least in publishing. I review books and many of the new ones are written by indigenous, Black, Asian, Hispanic, LGBTQ+ and other marginalized voices. I can only hope awareness continues in publishing and society as a whole.


Posted Jan. 11, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
Marcia S

Join Date: 02/08/16

Posts: 374

RE: Do you agree that non-white citizens...

There are problems to overcome for those of other nationalities. Some of it is due to lack of opportunity, a definite truth. A quote from page 135 states, "I'd visited enough Center City friends, spent enough time with dad in the burbs to know that this shitstorm, this run-0n tragedy, was not everyone's America. Seeing my cousins suffer was anguish enough. Seeing the disproportionality stayed me."
There is much truth in that quote. However, children must be made aware that they can achieve and not always be "victims."


Posted Jan. 16, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
christinec

Join Date: 03/09/20

Posts: 24

RE: Do you agree that non-white citizens...

Definitely- “they” are good enough to clean our houses and build our homes and pick our vegetables (this list is a gross limiting misrepresentation too) - often having a work ethic stronger than many white Americans but yet “they” are less than somehow because they don’t look like us or sound like us. I’ve never understood it. I’ve always like diversity in our country - it adds a richness and makes life so much more fun and interesting.


Posted Jan. 17, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
shannonl

Join Date: 12/04/17

Posts: 35

RE: Do you agree that non-white citizens...

i don't agree that all non-white citizens have more hurdles than white. i think the hurdles are different. There are so many sub-cultures among white citizens and almost all have hurdles...some more difficult and some not so hard.


Posted Jan. 18, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
acstrine

Join Date: 02/06/17

Posts: 327

RE: Do you agree that non-white citizens...

I do believe that there are systems and attitudes in place that make life more difficult for non-white citizens. The most glaring example to me in this book is educational opportunity. There are only so many spots in any magnet program. And the difference in receiving one or not is the difference between the opportunities afforded to someone who cannot read and to someone who has a degree from Yale. Shouldn't all our public schools be "magnet" schools?

I also think there are many hardships based on socio-economic status. Unfortunately, many non-white people have lower incomes (often because of lack of good public schools). This affects where one lives, what one eats, medical care, and life experiences (think of Quiara's Pops, who had never seen the ocean even though he lived on an island).

I have made it a point over the last year and a half to read more non-fiction and search for books written by non-white authors- -one of the reasons I asked for this book. I am well aware of the fact that I need to educate myself. I have recently found a blogger who sends out a list of actions that can be taken in just 5 minutes a day. It has helped me find a focus in an overwhelming climate. I have also stopped sharing what I have learned with those who don't agree with me. That may be a copout, but I have felt less discouraged, angry, and hopeless. By springtime, I would like to have enough information to be able to select one area I am most interested in- -to get involved by volunteering. I realize that I can't tackle every injustice in this world, so I am investigating to find the one that is right for me.


Posted Jan. 19, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
cassandraw

Join Date: 09/02/20

Posts: 9

RE: Do you agree that non-white citizens...

Being a woman of color, I totally agree that people of color face more hurdles than their white counterparts. I recommend reading Isabel
Wilkerson’s “Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents.” Wilkerson maintains that “Societies can be more magnanimous when people perceive themselves as having an equal stake in the lives of their fellow citizens.” Those in the dominant caste have an obligation to help those in the subordinate castes or, at the very least, not to make their lives worse.


Posted Jan. 20, 2022 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
BeeBee

Join Date: 12/04/21

Posts: 2

RE: Do you agree that non-white citizens...

Yes, absolutely! We continue to be reminded of this in our daily lives and in the rich telling of stories through books.


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