Potato salad is a bigger deal than you might think. Every time Rachel Dolezal is in the news, this piece gets a lot of attention.
Years of working in multi-cultural environments taught me only one true thing. Ninety percent of the time I am completely ignorant of the racial dimensions of anything and am relying almost entirely on the good will I hope I can generate by being a decent person. This has worked for me over a long career, this driving down the road as if I don’t see or understand big huge neon signs alerting me to construction ahead.
I know that professionally I am often indulged by African American and Hispanic colleagues because my motives seem good and my instinct is to be inclusive and respectful. So I skim over the differences but still know and appreciate when people are indulging me, forgiving me for mistakes I don’t even know I’m making. It’s like my husband told me about trying to speak Spanish in Nicaragua, “they will love you for trying.”
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