If baseball’s America’s summer pastime, then swimming’s its younger, more generous cousin. You don’t even need equipment to partake in the sport, just large amounts of standing, hopefully clean water. Maybe a towel and a swimsuit, but we’ve all found ourselves in situations where the latter was unnecessary. But that’s an issue for a different article.
But even more than a sport, it’s a group activity, one of the most inclusive and fun in the dog days of summer. “Everyone into the pool/lake,” etc. Well, inclusive and fun… until the dreaded Afro-Americans show up!
The Creative Steps Day Camp paid more than $1900 to The Valley Swim Club. The Valley Swim Club is a private club that advertises open membership. But the campers’ first visit to the pool suggested otherwise.
“When the minority children got in the pool all of the Caucasian children immediately exited the pool,” Horace Gibson, parent of a day camp child, wrote in an email. “The pool attendants came and told the black children that they did not allow minorities in the club and needed the children to leave immediately.”
C’mon. No way. This isn’t the 1950s. No way it went down like that. People aren’t that overtly ignorant about race, right? Right???
“There was concern that a lot of kids would change the complexion … and the atmosphere of the club,” John Duesler, President of The Valley Swim Club said in a statement.
Oh you have got to be f–king kidding me.
Okay, look. We’re about to grant a rather unusual concession here, but it’s important to get the ball rolling a little bit when it comes to thawing things out. It’s okay to be scared or skittish around black people. It’s all right. Black people often feel the same way about white people. Well, if they’re cops, at least.
What’s not okay, though, is to treat black people like walking sticks of dynamite and “doing something about it” before anybody does anything wrong. They’re people too. And rest assured, if your name’s ohIdunnomaybe Murphy, your ancestors were going through the same stupid s–t a hundred years ago. A little empathy might go a long way–certainly farther than “HELP GET MY WHITE KID AWAY FROM THESE NEGROES HELP HELP,” anyway.