A Wife Loved Like The Church

Southern Living

Posted on: April 6, 2007

I was born and raised in the South. I hold several love/hate feelings about my experiences there, but am slowly growing to love it more than hate it. However, part of me wonders if I haven’t just come to idealize what I want the South to be. A place where people sit on their front porches drinking iced tea, listening to good music, watching the kids play baseball all day and saying hi to everyone that passes.

But the South I really know is scarred. We have a past that has not, and I fear, will not, leave. One of prejudice. One of hate. One of division. I can remember seeing the signs of racism from an early age. Seeing “KKK” emblazened in a neighbors yard. Or having the confederate flag hanging in someone’s truck. I, in all honesty, could not tell you one person I knew who didn’t “look like me” until I was started working in high school. Granted, it’s not because I didn’t want to have a variety of friends, it’s just that where I lived and where I went to school, there was no variety.

I took a civil rights course in college that made me ashamed of what took place in my land. It made my heart break to think that my ancestors, as I’m sure they did, judged others based on the color of their skin. I came across this article today. While I want to believe that the images captured are skewed, deep down I know they aren’t. I know that Greenbrier, TN still has a divide, even if it is “invisible”.

It makes me sad. Just when I begin to think of the South as a beautiful and pure land, I am reminded of not only it’s past, but it’s present and likely future.

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