14/05/2019 at 3:32 pm #86338
Reading about the Black and White minstrels of my youth I came across a reference to Al Jolson. I suppose because we relied so much on radio in those days I honestly had no idea that he was anything but an Afro American! Turns out he was actually born in Russia of Jewish parents. Nonetheless he was responsible for bringing the negro spirituals to the world.16/05/2019 at 9:36 am #86341
I remember Al Jolson we used to love his singing and antics, the fact that he was a white man painted black didn’t fuss us at all ,these days it would be not tolerated .22/05/2019 at 10:31 pm #86365
first 0riginal name asa yolson, he and his parents left russia just after the first world war when jews were being persecuted, the jews have been persecuted by one country or another throughout their existance simply because they are different, isn’t it always the same, anyone who is different is always persecuted23/05/2019 at 11:10 am #86367
I agree Mal but this thinking about those that seem different therefor are hounded never seemed to be a problem when I was young, so I wonder why society has become so fixated on people that seem to be different and gives them a hard time>.23/05/2019 at 1:47 pm #86368
As a child of migrants who came here in 1929, I was ‘different’, with darker skin and pitch black hair. There was racism then for sure. I can rememeber being yelled at by other kids on the way home from school with such epithets as: “Go back home on the boat dago!”
Not as bad as these days, but it left a profound effect on me.24/05/2019 at 12:59 am #86374
Most of our behaviour is instinctive.
Were that not so, we would just sit like ‘blobs’ until we had a thought to motivate us.
Some instinctive behaviour is a carry over from ancient times.
We don’t like difference, because it draws attention to our group.
Long ago that might draw the attention of predators?
So we are hard wired to reject difference.
Children at school give those who are not the same a ‘hard time’.
I remember them laughing at any difference in clothing or hairstyle.
Growing up is using reason to control and direct your instinctive behaviour?
Children are not grown up yet.
Unfortunately, many adults are not fully grown up either.
They can revert to purely instinctive, emotional behaviour, at the drop of a hat.
They will stand outside a courthouse, and shout abuse at someone convicted or even just accused of some unpleasant crime.
Think of those attending football matches too?
Sometimes ‘voluble’ expression can be a good thing though, as it allows for the release of otherwise pent up emotion.
Clears the air so to speak.
Lots of introduced difference can be unsettling for many in the community.
I think it makes them slightly fearful?
They react, and there can be general unrest.
At the very least they tend to find fault with people and things happening around them.
Their ‘anxiety’ needs an active outlet.
Salina, I would like to address a few candid remarks to you.
You have stated a few times that your appearance is different.
I say to you, ‘so what?’
I for one value your contributions to the various ‘conversations’ here, and would be horrified in anyone were to belittle you.
I don’t want to be too personal, as that is not something to be encouraged.
But I do think all of those here accept you, and others as well, for how supportive you are.
We look for the positives, not the negatives.
We are grown up enough not to allow instinctive behaviour to override good common sense.
As usual, I began with a few lines, and somehow, like topsy, they just growed.
I have got a bit off topic too.
Oh well. Maybe next time…24/05/2019 at 4:36 pm #86376
Thankyou William. At my age now it matters not. I usually bring up my ”difference” only in context with a topic being discussed. I should perhaps have said: the comments made in those bygone years hurt me deeply as a child…. past tense. I hope and believe that I have achieved some maturity and wisdom with age, and see the world through different eyes today.
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