What are the norms for public and private behavior in these modern times? Well, different norms for different occasions, sure. Different norms for different people too, of course. And too often different norms depending on the color of our skin.
That last notion, pointing to the prejudice we carry around inside ourselves, is the most insidious and the most necessary to overcome. Otherwise, rather than seeing the individual, we only see our own bigotry reflecting back on us.
Toure Neblett, who goes professionally by his first name, is a political commentator, journalist, TV personality and cultural commentator. He often explores the norms often set for black, brown and white Americans in public settings and their private consequences. He writes that many people, African-Americans and other minorities in America, need to develop a teflon shield against the barbs and darts that could bring about a kind of spiritual death in the face of white supremacist attitudes.
He was in Seattle to speak at the University of Washington on “Microaggression: Power, Privilege, and Everyday Life”
This interview contains a few explicit words, so be forewarned.
Toure is the author of 5 books, a father, husband, and an occasional presence on your TV. His last book is "I Would Die 4 U: Why Prince Became An Icon." A previous book, "Who's Afraid of Post-Blackness? What It Means To Be Black Now" (2011) was a named a notable book by the NYT and the Washington Post.
Toure was a long-time contributing editor to Rolling Stone. His articles have appeared in Time, Washington Post, Ebony, NYT.
He writes for Vice, and is working on more books and an upcoming podcast series.