Why I Don’t Have Black Friends… or White Friends

Yeah… sorry if the title offends you… But honestly, why beat around the bush hoping the main idea of this post will will fly out?

I’m 19 years old… soon to be 20. I’m not a world traveler by any stretch of the imagination, but I like to think I’ve gotten around. I’ve lived in 7 different states of the U.S., and have visited countless others. I’ve gotten a taste of the extremes of culture the Unites States has to offer. From the southern “hospitality” (forgive my cynicism), to the reculsive breed of the west coast, to Ohio and Nebraska (which aren’t different except OSU fans are slightly more insane that Cornhusker fans) where you immediately get sleppy when you drive through their, well, sleepy little towns, with one stoplight, one barbershop, maybe two banks… well, you get the point.

Traveling like that has given me a perspective on people that I will always carry.

People, above all, are scared of everything that is different of them. Watch all the recent Superman and Captain America movies, and what happens? Non- super humans try to put limits on something that is different than them. Why? Because they are afraid.

Why do white kids usually hang out with white kids at school? Because they are afraid. Why do black kids only hang out with black kids at school? Because they are afraid. We are all afraid of being different in a group of people, and of people that are different. If you can’t admit that, then stop reading this blog.

As the post title says, I have no black friends, and I have no white friends. But I do have friends. All the years of meeting new people, making friends, and moving on (all with new sets of culturally affected people) has taught me that there is no such thing as a black friend, and no such thing as a white friend, and no such thing as an asian friend, etc. There are people friends.

This isn’t to say I don’t have friends who are black, or friends who are asian, hispanic friends, or friends who are white. I have all three. but they aren’t my ______ friend. Some of my closest friends are black, from Cleveland and Columbus. I’m not scared of being with them, in fact, I am never more at ease. I have friends from Brazil, Honduras, and Thailand. The key is to learn your differences, and embrace them; find things that you both like doing;  find things about them that annoy you and laugh at those things.

All of this seems really easy saying it. But I have only reached that because of the way I was raised. College has opened my eyes to the differences in people more than anything else. Athletics has brought me together with other young men who are vastly different then me.

If humanity as a whole would get the idea that people different then themselves are not scary, and that the differences in each other can become our greatest assets, the world would be a much different place.

Imagine what our species could accomplish if everyone loved and cared for one another. We pride ourselves on our intellect and reason, and the advances in technology and life we could have are out of reach because of pride, fear, and unreasonableness.