The recent news from the North Shore, about an initiation into the Ku Klux Klan that turned into murder, holds a certain sick fascination for me. I mentioned only last week how I went to school with Klansmen. But there’s more to it than that. The victim was a from Tulsa, Oklahoma, where I was born. But there’s more to it than that.
You see, my grandfather was a Klansman. I never knew that, growing up. Neither, I believe, did his kids. But when he died, they found a Klan robe amongst his belongings.
So what? What does that mean? I don’t know. I do know that my parents were very explicit in teaching me to never, never judge a person solely by race. And this wisdom was in part received through higher education. And now here I am, working at an historically black university. (Which might be construed as the quintessential rejection of white supremacy. Would that it were. But that’s a subject for another much more difficult post.) And now we have a black man elected president. Obama made inroads with white voters across the board, except, it must be noted, in the Deep South, in states such as Louisiana.
I don’t know. It adds up to something, I’m sure. But I’m not sure what.
Photo by Dystopos.