It is always good to keep life in perspective. We are living in pretty good times compared to the 1950s.

Expand full comment
Oct 2, 2023Liked by Winkfield Twyman

A most wonderful long list pertaining to the 'yesterdays' and now.

Thank you so much for sharing.

Since I haven't really thought much about these things, it's nice to have your viewpoints.

Expand full comment

Well said! I've a story to tell you, one that brings me great shame. In retelling it, I will honor your presentation of that historically vile word. I firmly believe that the way we de-bone the emotional baggage of a word is to not be afraid of it, to give it's antiquated notion no quarter, to proclaim it defiantly. But that's me...

In 1993 I visited N'awlins as a traveling vagabond. I spent most of the 90s occupying my gypsy stage. While there I met a nasty White cop who looked upon me with pity, as I was a poor, long-haired White boy sleeping in my beat up car in next-town-over Chalmette's Wal-Mart's parking lot. He came to talk to me since someone at Wal-Mart alerted him to my presence, and he said he'd keep an eye on me. But he warned me by telling me a little tale.

A known petty criminal drove at him in his pickup truck at full speed in the same parking lot, after hours. The cop shot him dead. Then the mom appeared and cried and hit him (the cop), so he arrested the mom. His stated moral: "That's what happens when you're a n--- and you raise a ruckus." He also said that he didn't believe the driver was trying to hit him.

Earlier, I had walked into one of the many daquiri shacks in that same town and saw "Dead N---" on the menu. I walked out.

Both times I should have said something. But while I had the same values then as I do today. I was a timid little man-child. That cop scared the bejesus out of me! My inaction haunts me to this day. While I encountered no animus in New Orleans, I certainly did just one town over.

... And I pray it is non-existent today.

Expand full comment