• Wed. Jan 26th, 2022

Janeane's World

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When You Look at Me You Don’t See Color – Your Loss!

www.janeanesworld.com When-you-look-at-me-you

 

Often when I talk to people about race they say, “When I look at you I don’t see color.” My response to them is always the same. Aloud I say, “That is your loss, my color is beautiful.” To myself, I say, “You are either unobservant or a liar.”

Noticing a person’s color is not a problem, behaving badly because of that color is a problem.

I am many things. But, first and foremost, I am black. Before anything else, I was destined to be black because both my parents are black. Next, I am a woman because of biology and my chromosomes. Everything after that is a matter of choice. I chose to be a Christian, a wife, a mother, an attorney, a writer, an amazing person. But it all starts with black.

011913 portrait w suit and orange blouse www.janeanesworld.com

When you look at me in the photo above of course you notice my black suit jacket, the orange print on my silk blouse and the crazy orange beaded earrings. At the same time, you notice my beautiful brown skin. The kind of skin some people sit in the sun for hours trying to achieve. When you look at me and notice that confident smile, you cannot help but notice the pretty brown cheeks that surround it. When you see those glasses making me look all super smart and sexy, you cannot help but notice the big old brown forehead above it all!  When you look at me, you notice the color of my skin just like you notice the color of my clothes and glasses. Stop lying, admit it, you notice it.

 

 

If you want me to respect your opinions on race, stop denying you notice mine.

Like many people living in America who have traveled and attended college, I  have friends of various ages, races, religions and sexual orientation. Believe it or not, I even have a friend who is a Republican and an Eagles fan. (Yuck!!!) I notice those differences. When I went to a blogging event with my white friend, I noticed she was white, just like I noticed she walked fast and liked to jaywalk. When  I went to the library with my friend from India, I noticed she had brown skin, darker than mine, just like I noticed she liked romance stories. When I was at dinner with my lesbian friend, I noticed she got the phone number of the waitress at the next table just like I noticed she cut her food up into the smallest pieces ever.

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35 thoughts on “When You Look at Me You Don’t See Color – Your Loss!”
  1. Yes! Thank you for saying this Janeane. I have felt this way for a long time too 🙂 Well said!

  2. What a great post! You definitely are beautiful Don’t let others make you think otherwise. Thank you for sharing!

  3. I think people say that as a precursor to ‘I’m not racist’… trying to be nice but going about it completely wrong. Of course we SEE color, in the same way we see anything else. But, do we treat people different based on what we see is what matters.

  4. Great post. I have to agree – while we see color we cannot judge color.

  5. Whoa this was breathtakingly beautiful. The first 3 sentences need to be PLASTERED in classrooms

  6. I always felt like smacking someone when they said they don’t see color. Of course you do! Great post Janeane love the positivity it shows

  7. People notice color. It’s one of the biggest things about us, so of course we all notice. 🙂

  8. Thanks Pam. It means nothing to notice the color. When we notice personality, kindness and how one behaves, then we really get to know the person.

  9. I agree with what you are teaching your son. If all our kids learned those lessons, the world would be a better place.

  10. I think it is good for people not to focus on the color of a person’s skin to determine a person’s worth. But, just as we notice the color of the person’s blouse or pants, we notice the color of the skin. The trick is to notice it and keep moving just like we do with the blouse and pants.

  11. Jennifer! Yes, I am going to notice the woman with green spiky hair or all the leather. But, I am not going to decide who they are based on those things, but yes, I am going to notice it.

  12. Given the recent activities around the country, color is once again an issue in the news. I judge people like Dr. King said, not by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

  13. I notice the kindness and caring nature of a person. If someone is not nice it has nothing to do with creed, race, ethnicity, etc. I am so glad for folks breaking stereotypes.

  14. This: Noticing a person’s color is not a problem, behaving badly because of that color is a problem.

    Yes, its not a problem to notice a person skin color the problem is hating them because of their color. Great article.

  15. You are gorgeous! Beautiful brown woman!

  16. I agree, I would be lying if I said I don’t see color. The important thing is to not judge because of the color you see. This is a beautiful post and I understand where you are coming from.

    By the way, those earnings are fabulous.

  17. Nice post however, my eyes see the outside but I like to look at the inside too! My eyes see a beautiful woman!

  18. I try to teach my son to be observant not judgemental. Yes I notice your skin color but I also see a woman who is beautiful, well dressed, intelligent and very inspiring. Yes the world is full of color and we should see it but not make judgment by it. Just like we shouldn’t judge people by their size, wealth or any other such thing.

  19. I see all the features/traits you mentioned in the photo, but I would never, ever prejudge you based on any of them. Just like I hope noone ever does that to me based on my red hair (even though they might be correct.) 😉

  20. I see you. I see beautiful, bright, intelligent, Janeane! Color is everywhere and i respect and appreciate everyone’s differences. I hope my kids grow up to do just the same!

  21. This is great. I do notice color since it is a part of who you are. By the way, you have beautiful skin!!

  22. Very nicely put. I always see color, I never judge by color or put it above all else though. To me color is a non issue. We are all human and I think that’s what people NEED to focus on and not skin color.

  23. I understand what you are saying, I think. We are who we are…the color of our skin, hair, eyes, etc is what it is (I guess, unless you dye your hair and wear contacts? lol). I don’t pay much attention to people’s color..it’s really the last thing I notice about someone. I’m definitely more aware of people’s attitudes, personalities, and character first.

  24. I totally agree with Robin… I’m raising my kids to see people and their hearts not the Color of their skin or what nationality they are. We are all human and it’s the heart that’s the most important.

  25. I do t see color, I see people. That’s how I am raising my kids, too.

  26. Great post, Janeane!! I hear that phrase all too often. I understand what they are trying to say. But, like you..I feel that you should notice one’s color. The color, the accent, the facial features are all reflections of people’s history and uniqueness. This should definitely be celebrated.

    Like you said, the issue comes when you begin to stereotype.

    This can be said, however, for more than just skin tone — but also the woman with green spiky hair, or the person wearing all leather. It really comes down to getting to know that other person.

    Thanks for the reminder.

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