Letter: Darien woman responds to accusations of community racism
To the Editor:
I would politely disagree with generalized accusations of “white people behavior” in Darien. Sadly, everything in America is now turned into racism and white people are constant victims of “presumed bad behavior.” A simple “do you live in town?” question get turned into racism. Not saying hello to every Mom during open house is racism. Not being invited to every single social function is racism.
Our children attend Tokeneke, and they have had various minority kids in their classes - not an overwhelming number but enough to quote. I have seen minority Moms greeted as everyone else. Their kids have been invited to parties as everyone else. When a new boy arrived from Hong Kong, multiple families volunteered as “friendly family” - ours was lucky to be chosen. Unfortunately, there is often a desire amongst minorities to place guilt on their white neighbors, and mostly this guilt is unjustified.
I have moved to Darien four years ago. I am white but also an immigrant and I speak with an accent. I didn’t have a ton of friends at first. It took time to get to know people. But I am not jumping to conclusion that I was discriminated against by these “hurtful white American women”. I simply realize that friendships require time and effort on both sides. Fortunately, Nobu found success in Darien.
Racism is horrible, and I would love to see America as color-blind country. But in order be truly color-blind, we should also ask people of color to not constantly analyze every aspect of life from “I-am-a-victim” approach. When a black woman does not extend her hello to a white woman during an Open house, nobody pays attention. When a white woman does not extend her hello to another woman in the hallway who happens to be black, we call it racism.
This double standard is hard to swallow. I hope Nobu’s group will address my view point as a white woman living in Darien who is not a racist - but the one who also refuses to feel guilty and apologetic because I was born white.