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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
Nightmare Offline
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Extended family racism, confusion, and possible murder... - January 7th 2011, 12:41 AM

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Yeah. Gather round, lads and lasses, and let me tell you my troubling tale.
I live in Connecticut with my parents. For this story, only my mother's side is relevant. Her parents also live in Connecticut, but her mother is initially from Maryland. I've never met the family in Maryland, but I just heard this today and I'm dumbstruck.
The family in Maryland is a farming family, has lived there for a century or two...racism runs deep there, even to this day. They say their not prejudice, but god forbid somebody in the family date a black person, they were like that in the past, and still are today.

Well, in the past is where this story is rooted. Back in the 30s or 40s, my great-great-grandmother Lucinda, whose husband had died, fell in love with a man named Lenny. They were never married, but they lived together.
As far as Lucinda's brothers and father were concerned, this was unacceptable. Lenny's half-brother was black; his name I don't know but he lived with Lenny.
I don't know about a regular basis, but whenever there were guests in the house, Lucinda and Lenny would eat in the dining room, but Lenny would eat the same food in the kitchen. Lucinda's father called him "Blackie" or "boy" because that was "What you called those people."

Here's where it gets bad though.
Lenny died. Lucinda was not married to Lenny so she couldn't inherent Lenny's property. Instead, Lenny's black half brother did.
Soon after, a few things happened:
-My relatives were enraged that a black man had property.
-Lucinda was basically exiled from the family
-The black half-brother vanished, property and house unsold, he just disappeared.

At Lucinda's father's house, there are 2 unmarked graves. large graves, one is older than the other. It's hidden behind the barn, and the house has been passed down to my great uncle. Whoever goes near that grave has always been beaten or punished, nobody ever explains who's it is, and everybody pretends that Lucinda never exists. When asked about it, they go, "uh...I dont know what you're talking about, there is no Lucinda" but it's obvious that their lying.

It's scary knowing that it's most probably that they killed that man just because he was black. People related to me..hunted down and killed a man...my great grandfather, my great uncles...ugh..


My grandmother documented everything she could about this, even though her family would tell her nothing. But when her daughter (my aunt) asked about it, she denied it and burned the documents she had gathered.

I always thought my grandma to be an openminded person, this one time she invited Langston Hughes to speak at her college and was expelled because she let him through the front door and pretended she didn't know that the racist deans would be angry...her classmates fought and got her reinstated...but come to find out that she, not like the rest of her family, couldn't accept a black man into the family. When my other aunt was pregnant with a mixed child, my grandmother told her repeatedly that she was sinning for bringing a mixed child into the world and that it was wrong...ugh...Like, I'm no angel, I've made a racist joke or two in my life but I never meant it seriously...I never realized that racism ran so thick in my family's veins... =/

(I probably got the relatives wrong, it's a large family and I can't figure out who's who's father or brother or son or who the hell they are in relation to me)
But yeah, idk...I wanted to post it because it's been bugging me for a couple hours now (just found out.)


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Re: Extended family racism, confusion, and possible murder... - January 7th 2011, 12:50 AM

Whoa... that's intense. And scary. It seems like something you'd read about in a horror novel, or see in a old horror movie..
The scariest part is to think that such hatred (without any good reason whatsoever) exists in this world.. like, idk, we all know it's there, but we don't think about it until some horrific and senseless race crime is committed.. It's just so sad. =(


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Re: Extended family racism, confusion, and possible murder... - January 7th 2011, 01:01 AM

Yeah...like...idk, we read a lot about hatred and racism and lynchings and terrible stuff like that but it all just feels like...distant, far away...a long time ago, so when it's so close to home it's just...idk...eye opening? Scary? I don't know.


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Re: Extended family racism, confusion, and possible murder... - January 7th 2011, 01:12 AM

Hey there, Dan!

Like My_Hero said, that's pretty intense. I'm sorry you've been exposed to the family's dirty secrets. We've all got them, but I can see how this must hit home for you, given that some family members are still alive (and probably still express racism).

If it's any comfort, you're not alone. My grandparents were born and raised in Kentucky. Now, don't get me wrong, they're wonderful people... but when they were growing up, segregation was still seen as perfectly accepted, and African-Americans were deemed inferior, ESPECIALLY in Kentucky. Today, they're "okay" with African-American individuals, but they're not okay with interracial dating/marriage, and they HATE Hispanic individuals. Seeing as I've grown up in California (and therefore have only been exposed to racist "jokes"), I wasn't too happy to discover what my grandparents thought of my friends.

I know that you know this... but don't stop reminding yourself that you are NOT your great-uncle (or whoever it is on your mom's side of the family). You don't have to let this knowledge affect your relationships with others, and you sure as heck don't have to feel obligated to tell anyone about your mom's side of the family. While this knowledge may lower your spirits a bit, and while it may take a while to cope with this and move on, you don't have to let it become a constant and permanent burden.

Feel free to PM me if you ever want to talk. <3 Take care!





   
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Re: Extended family racism, confusion, and possible murder... - January 7th 2011, 01:16 AM

Thanks Robin (:
I don't like, think I am them, I don't know, I guess I wasn't looking for advice so much as to just get it off my chest..like, it's honestly scary and will haunt me for a while. All I know is this: Ive never had the chance to meet that part of the family, (besides my grandmother) but now i don't want to and I don't know what i'll think if I ever do..
-Dan


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