Chapter 56: Integration-Part 2: Negroes, Lesbians and Yankees, Oh My! | My Southern Gothic Life

New Post up on my other Blog…

Here is a brief excerpt and a link to the full post:

Once integration happened, it was really no big deal to most of us.  Some of our parents, however, never recovered.

The South in those days, at least in small towns like ours, was built a lot of unbendable, undefinable, unpublished, unspoken but completely understood rules.  The two biggest one were as follows:

Thou shalt only consort with people just like you.

Never offend the neighbors.

My parents swore by those rules.  My father’s main concern was not pissing off anybody for business reasons.  He really didn’t give a damn about anything else.

My Mother lived for The Rules and to judge others by them.  In her mind, if she had not known someone and their entire family for her entire life- and preferably their family background for several preceding generations-they really weren’t worth knowing.

She also assumed everyone else played by the same rules.  Therefore, she assumed all Black people knew each other and later, all Gay people knew each other.  I’ll never forget the time she said to me:  ”I hope you are running around in public with that Harvey Fierstein person.  I saw him on television and he’s just awful.  I really don’t want to have to try to explain that to my friends.”  It took me a while to figure that out, but then I realized she assumed, just because we were both Gay, we had to know each other and be fast friends.  I wish…I have been in the same New York bar as Harvey, but that was many years later and does not prove her point…


MORE:  Chapter 56: Integration-Part 2: Negroes, Lesbians and Yankees, Oh My! | My Southern Gothic Life.

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