Both my parents always taught me to never treat anyone badly because they may seem "different" and treat everyone the way you want to be treated. I always followed what they said which lead me to "never see race." Growing up in Providence and going to inner city schools this was very easy to do since almost everyone looked like me. Whenever I was interacting with anyone who was different from me I would never treat them like an "other" and never pushed them away.
I never noticed that this wasn't necessarily a good thing to do until I grew into an adult. Listening to Mellody talking about ignoring race or color makes a lot of sense to me now, but if I was told that a few years ago, I probably wouldn't have agreed. The topic about race DOES make people uncomfortable so people do avoid it, I even do sometimes depending who the conversation is with. The story Mellody told about her swimming coach making her hold her breathe while doing laps didn't make sense to me at first because I thought that her coach meant she (as a black woman) has to be comfortable with possibly being treated differently. After Mellody explained how she interpreted it by being comfortable with having race conversations it all came together. If no one is comfortable about talking about race and color then how can we understand each other?
Youth In Action can be an antidote for invisibility because of everything they stand for. This organization empowers youth to have their voices heard and be leaders. The youth who are apart of this organization are from all different backgrounds, but don't ignore their differences. They try their best to understand all the different backgrounds because they believe that the more diverse the group the better they are at decision making which is what Mellody said as well.
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