Change is gonna come

Ok, when I have an emotional reaction to Jon Bon Jovi as part of a duet, there are likely extramusical forces at work.

I grew up in Lafayette , LA in the 70s and 80s. I was in first grade when crosstown bussing started in the public schools. I remember lots of kids leaving to go to private schools, but I didn’t understand why. When I was in 6th grade there was a new kid at school. His name was Ronald, and he played bari sax, and we had a bunch of classes together. He was cool, and we hit it off and became fast friends. When the first teacher conference came around, one teacher mentioned to my mother that it was so nice that I took Ronald under my wing. My Mom told that was a nice thing to do, but I didn’t understand, he didn’t need a wing to be taken under, he was just the cool new kid in my eyes. Ronald is black. To the teacher, and my parents, it was unusual for me to have a black friend. That thought hadn’t entered my mind.

It takes generations for attitudes and ideas to change. My parents aren’t racists, but my attitudes about race are different from theirs, and theirs are very different from their parents’. I am almost overwhelmed at the realization that we are in the middle of history making on the grandest scale. To me it is still a big deal that our nation has become enlightened enough to elect a black man President. Hopefully to my kids, it won’t seem out of the ordinary.