You see people try things, and as time goes on they become more daring. Allowing some African-American celebrities and some gay people into establishments doesn't prove that an establishment is not racist, that can be used as a cover. Many of these African-American celebrities that are allowed in have money, so just because some Whites may be seen kissing and hugging these African-American celebrities, or are thought to have sex with them, hold hands or seemingly bond together with different ethnicities, or even have flings with people of different sexual orientations, doesn't mean that they're not racist. We all have some prejudices, but when they are blatantly displayed to the level that they interfere with someone's livelihood, then they should be swatted like a fly on the wall; they should be made to pay compensatory damages to the highest degree.
Before this incident I wrote a poem entitled, "Have You Ever Been Turned Away?" When I wrote this poem I was thinking of when I was growing up, but I knew when writing it that it was not just about yesterday; some things have changed, others haven't, and what I wrote about still has relevance today. When I heard about Teri Wood's book signing incident, I was reminded of my poem and how I felt; this incident made wonder how she must feel, so I've included it in this article.
Have You Ever Been Turned Away? By Milton Lee Norris
Have you ever been turned away from a door that was opened,
But once you arrived they closed it in your face?
Have you ever been turned away from a simple water fountain of which the water flowed, but once you arrived you were told you could not drink there?
Have you ever been turned away from a toilet which takes in waste,
Yet when you tried to expel your waste, you were told this was not for you?
Have you ever been turned away from a restaurant or diner that refused to serve you food, and though money wasn't a problem for it was the right color,It was your face that was the wrong color?
Have you ever been denied a job or an education to get that job?
Have you ever been denied a seat in the theatre because you were told your place was upstairs?
And all of a sudden that balcony you loved was no longer desirable.
Have you ever been denied treatment at a hospital or clinic because they didn't treat your kind, not your people, that would have been terrible enough, but they would not even call you a people, or a person or a name? Had they called you a name, it would have been one that you hated, or should I say used to hate, for far too many use that word now, and guess who uses it the most? Now you call each other that name, a name that once brought shame, disgrace and ill feelings, now it's used just as readily as one chews gum.
Have you ever been turned away?
So the next time you decide to raise your ugly head, beware of the price that you may have to pay, because it may be a price that you're unwilling to shell out, or perhaps one that you cannot afford.
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