Wednesday, September 21, 2016
Out of Jail
Our attitudes about race and class determine our decisions in so many ways. I've overlooked or forgotten so many times I was insensitive -- and I'm nowhere near the front lines. Last night I watched a group of sincere people on TV having one of those "conversations about race" that we think will help. Everyone agreed that jobs were crucial to any progress.
The moderator seemed happy to announce that the Mayor was going to find a way to hire more police. "Oh, so 500 more cops are going to be out there shooting at us?", a young man replied. I didn't see that one coming.
I was married to a man who owned a business with a warehouse. He was approached by an organization that finds jobs for ex-offenders. The representative pleaded: "He's been trained for warehouse work. We watch our people closely." Apparently there was a law that prevented finding out if the ex-offender had been in for marijuana or murder. We considered it, but eventually decided "no." We used the excuse that the other workers may not feel safe.
Much later it turned out that the woman in charge of keeping the books and paying the bills had embezzled thousands of dollars from the company over the years. She came highly recommended. No one thought twice about hiring her.