As a softy who is scarcely able to take a knife to a

This preview shows page 2 - 4 out of 7 pages.

“As a softy who is scarcely able to take a knife to a raw chicken—let alone hold it to a person’s throat—I was surprised, embarrassed, and dismayed all at once.”(Staples 165). This description of staples as a “softy” contrasts many stereotypes that were even put into my head about him when I began to read. Through media and things we hear on the news, many do not look at a tall, black man and think that he is a softy. This is when I had to askmyself, why is skin color a sign of “danger?” Are black men really the ones altering public spaces, or is everyone else altering them with the way that they react? When reading this reflection, I immediately thought of Rob Peace. There are many instances that people took him for less than he was, but the particular instance in the dining hall stood out to me. “A group of guys on the crew team (that association implying that they were white, rich, and had landed at Yale by way of elite New England boarding schools) had stood up to leave without busing their trays to the window ten paces away. Rob had told them—courteously, he wanted me to be sure
Celentano 3—to take care of their trays so he could wipe off the table, which itself had been left a crumbly, puddles mess.” (Hobbs 151). Although Rob is an intelligent, kind, person that attends Yale, these boys just see him as someone that works in the dining hall. The thought that Rob might actually being a student just trying to make some money is a thought that I bet did not even go through their heads. I think that this bothers me so much because after reading about Rob’s life up to now, I know that he only has good intentions at heart. I am angry because they stereotypedRob but stereotyping is something that I unknowingly participate in every day.Stereotyping is not only harmful to the characters of black men, but to their lives as well. The subject of police brutality is where this so-called “power” of altering public spaces is a matter of life or death. It has become an increasing problem in America and has sparked many debates across the country. One thing that is not up for debate is the fact that it is a major issue in today’s world. The mixture of the high-stress jobs police officers do crossed with the irrational fear of black men has been resulting in death after death. Officers have killed a man for selling CDs outside a store because he did not have a permit. They have killed an unarmed man with his wife and his child in the backseat of the car. Officers have killed a little boy for playing with a toy gun. What all of these people have in common is that they are black. Police brutality is just proof of how uncomfortable we can be with the presence of a black man. “And soon I gathered that being perceived as dangerous is a hazard in itself.

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture