Last Friday, I was asked to cover a different class on my prep period. Luckily, I was finally caught up with the math classes, so I could do this (without stressing myself out).
I arrived in the classroom to find half the class was from my first period CAHSEE math prep class. As it was a special ed group, the room had six students.
They had an assignment. They were working in two groups of three. They were on task until near the end of the period.
A student from group one addressed Jose who was working in the other group. Marcus, his partner, answered. Instead of saying something along the lines of, "I was talking to Jose," the student said something different.
"You're not white."
Marcus looked down at his arm in surprise. "What? I'm not white!? When did that happen? What did you guys do to me?"
Which was so ridiculous I didn't even try to hide my laughter.
Marcus explained that this was his response any time anyone used the "you're not white" line on him. So, apparently that's the usual thing people say to him when he responds to a comment or question not directed at him.
Jose, on the other hand, was also offended. "I'm not white. I'm Mexican."
The question the boy asked? If I caught it, it got lost in the stuff that came after.
Come to think of it, I might have been the only white person in that room. Not that it matters, really. (There's a reason I don't mention race too frequently on the blog.)