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javaz On March - 19 - 2011

The President of The United States

Yesterday my husband and I attended a spring training game – the Oakland A‘s vs the Chicago Cubs – down in Phoenix near the zoo.
It is a tradition for us to attend a spring training game on St. Patrick’s Day, and since the rail has been developed in the valley, we drove into Mesa and parked and then caught the Metro for the ballpark.

My husband is a huge baseball fan, and he goes to several games with a longtime friend and former coworker, but lately, I only go to the St. Pat’s game with them, and then I am the official designated driver.

The game was much fun with the A’s coming from behind and winning in the last inning.

Upon arriving back at our friend’s home, there were several vehicles, and the friend invited us in to meet a few neighbors and family from back east who were over at their home for a St. Patrick’s Day party.

All of the people, including the friend and his wife are over 70 years old, and the family members are snowbirds.

The friend handed my husband a beer and a diet cola for me, and we were introduced to a smiling and happy little group of retirees.

We hadn’t been seated for more than 5 minutes when the talk turned to President Obama and then the tone of the gathering changed from happy to hate.

The N-word flowed freely, along with Kenyan, Muslim and Socialist traitor.

The friend’s wife screamed at one point, looking directly at me, about how much she hates Obama and that N-word wife of his, and that N-words don’t belong in “high places”.

This woman dropped out of school in the 4th grade, yet somehow she feels superior to Michelle and Barack Obama because she’s white.

They talked about that N-word in the White House being born in Kenya and how he somehow faked a birth certificate and lied about being raised in Hawaii.

They talked about that dirty N-word being a Muslim and the friend’s wife screamed again that someone should send that N-word family back to Kenya with the rest of the Muslims.

I have never been in a group of Teapartiers before, and it was shocking and appalling, but also very sad and disheartening.

I’ve never been surrounded by such hate and the friend’s wife invited us to stay for dinner of corned beef and cabbage, but by then, my appetite was gone.

These are people who have a gay daughter, and that daughter has a partner and they adopted a little boy of African American heritage, and they dote on that grandbaby and provide everything for him.
Their walls and mantles are strewn with the grandson’s photos and they are so proud of him.

Then Donald Trump’s name came up, and the friend’s wife shouted that Trump is a F-word – the derogatory term for a gay man.

My husband and I sat in stunned silence, and he downed that beer and then we fled that hate-filled atmosphere.

On the drive home, I told my husband that the friend and his wife are no longer friends to me and that I never want to see them again.

We have been close to the friend and former coworker for over 25 years, and my husband isn’t in a hurry to lose that friend, but he was very bothered by the incident, too.

Today I am feeling so sad because I’ve lost a longtime friend, but I cannot be a friend to people who are racist bigots and filled with such unbelievable hate.

I regret accepting the invitation to meet these Teapartiers as it ruined what had been a perfect day in the sun watching one of America’s favorite past times.

Written by javaz

I am a retired aerospace engineer, happily married for over twenty-four years. My hobbies include blogging on PPOV, reading mystery/romance novels, playing guitar, learning the piano and writing. My husband and I love to travel in our camper/trailer, and have visited 45 states, besides having lived in France for 2 years and seeing most of Europe. "Today is the first day of the rest of your life? Well, that's true of every day but one - the day you die." American Beauty "All you need in this life is ignorance and confidence, and then success is sure." Mark Twain "A man is never more truthful than when he acknowledges himself a liar." Mark Twain

11 Responses so far.

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  1. Abbyrose86 says:

    Javez what a sad experience. Thank you for sharing the story. I too, have encountered people such as that, and have had to walk away from situations such as you described and have ceased relationships with some people over such matters. It is difficult to have a friendly relationship with people if you don’t respect them or their opinions.

    I personally believe, that most of the hatred directed toward Obama is because of his skin color. I base that belief on experience with people like those you encountered.

    {sigh}

  2. escribacat says:

    Javaz, what an upsetting experience. I have stumbled into crowds like that now and again and it’s always a huge shock to realize that there are still people like that. I truly think that woman you describe is mentally ill. And I pity the adopted grandson. Even though they apparently dote on him, their racism will come out in unconscious ways and he will bet getting subliminal messages that he doesn’t quite “measure up.”

  3. SequimBob2 says:

    Sorry for your experience, but grateful you chose to walk away. I had a similar experience (although not as severe as yours) in AZ a few weeks ago. A docent at the Desert Botanical Garden heard my southern accent and wanted to know what I thought about the unprovoked war of northern aggression. He kept following e around asking the same question reapeatedly. I walked faster. Ever heard of people still fighting the civil war? Apparently a lot of them have gathered in AZ.

    Just curious how many of the folks shouting and nodding ‘socialist traitor’ were collecting Social Security?

    I enjoy Arizona’s natural beauty, but there are some ugly spots that have nothing to do with the scenic landscapes.

    This billboard was near my hotel shortly after the Giffords shooting. I would have thought they would have had the decency to take it down, but no such luck.

    http://bobbyc.smugmug.com/Landscapes/AZ-Photo-Trip/15635329_LV9eg#1171512677_8GCA2/img

  4. whatsthatsound says:

    unfortunately it seems that good ol’ fashioned hatred is ALSO one of America’s favorite pastimes. What a weird and frightening story, very Twilight Zone, or “Invasion of the Body Snatchers”. I can just see them, looking normal and harmless, and then….they open their mouths.

    Thank you, Javaz, for sharing a story that illustrates “the banality of evil”.
    CSN&Y, Teach Your Children


  5. I can relate. I am not very popular in the gay community because I am quick to question bias, and some people in the gay community are very bigoted.

    I tend to hang out with the weirdos who don’t buy into that garbage. Since starting that habit, I find my life is a lot more enjoyable and interesting.

  6. choicelady says:

    javaz -- I am really sorry this happened to you. I have NEVER understood how bigots justify their disgusting rants, but WE have to shut up. There are certainly time and place issues -- their house, you’re a guest -- but honestly. Would you NOT think simple civility and being American would at some point convey decent deportment among people?

    I have a bifurcated family with one side very liberal, the other deeply conservative. My father’s older sister, wife of a doctor, was the only adult I’d met by my mid 20s who freely used the N word. Freely! My grandmother, a Scottish immigrant whose own father was hired by and a life-long employee of a Jewish family owned department store, was a life-long anti-Semite. That puzzles me because my great grandfather was a binge drinker yet was never fired for his absences. One would think that kindness from his employers would at least TEMPER the outrageous bigotry? But nooooo.

    I really did not get to know this side of the family until I was an adult. Thank God. I found family gatherings with them extremely tedious and kind of scary. I understand that to this day they believe Nixon was framed and Reagan was God. I’ve seen none of them for over 30 years now, and that’s ducky with me. With them, too, I’m sure. Cannot believe they have an iota of interest in the current President -- if my aunts were still living, at least one of them could be your friends’ wife, javaz. Only difference -- my aunts were formally well educated. Obviously that makes absolutely NO difference.

    It’s not that I don’t know people are racist, but what mystifies me is their slavering willingness to express it so disgustingly. Would you not think basic self respect would stop you from uttering such disgusting garbage? The evil thing is that when they are in a room of people who appear to be the same as they, bigots assume you agree. People ask me how come I think racism is alive and well in America, and I say because white people told me so. They think I’m one of them, so they speak freely. It’s an aspect of “white privilege” I’d prefer to forego.

    I’ve pretty much given up trying to discuss these issues sensibly. There is such slitering, wormy hate in some people it simply is not worth the bother. Living by example is critical especially for younger people though. If kids are witness to this, I think we do need to call it out -- calmly but firmly -- and express disagreement. It’s not easy. Otherwise I think with people such as you’ve described, javaz, it’s pissing up a rope. Keeping your distance may be the ONLY thing that sends any kind of message at all.

    At least it will keep your blood pressure down.

    • Abbyrose86 says:

      Choicelady

      This sentence, said it all for me too. “People ask me how come I think racism is alive and well in America, and I say because white people told me so. They think I’m one of them, so they speak freely. It’s an aspect of “white privilege” I’d prefer to forego.”

      I have had the exact same experiences on a regular basis. As you may remember I am from Buffalo, and have written about my experiences with just this situation.

      As a lily white woman, I’ve been in many situations with others, where they assumed, because I’m a white woman, I was in agreement with their disgusting bigotry and thus they spoke very freely.

      What bothered ME, was how many times, the people who made these comments were in BOARD rooms and in positions of power. It’s not just the uneducated who hold such biases.

  7. jkkFL says:

    javaz, unfortunately, I find that the prevailing attitude among older people..(and I am not young!)
    Like you, I have no tolerence for bigotry- probably because my sweet little 86 y/o Mom voted in her final Presidential election- for Barack Obama! :) She thought McCain was too old and senile to be President!!
    When my neighbor started that, I asked him ‘How is being Black worse than being a Bigot’?
    We don’t talk politics anymore..but we do talk.

  8. Chernynkaya says:

    Javaz, that is a story we have heard from you many times. I am sorry that you continually find yourself among these people.

    • bito says:

      Cher, I am sorry that is a large section of Arizona and the western US. j’avaz has also written many times that Senator Goldwater would be pissed on what passes for conservatism these days. Often what “passes” for conservatism these days is bigotry, supremacy and sometimes hate.
      There is not a Republican President, if one looked at their recods, that would past muster in the TP’s ‘mind these days and get elected.
      j’avaz is NOT making this up, it is real in AZ.


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