Saturday night, after reading Times columnist Charles Blow's account of his son's detainment at gunpoint by Yale campus police, I was transported back to my own run-in with UCLA campus police in 2009. It was a typically relaxed Sunday evening, and I was headed home from the library. As I passed Ackerman Student Union nearing the bus terminal, I was stopped by an officer. "Do you mind if I check your bag?" he asked. "I do, actually," I said.
To the long list of permanently offended types lurking the internet, lying in wait, to meet the news of the day with self-indulgent grief, we might add one more populous and prickly tribe: colorblind white people who've grown "tired" of talking about race. What seems to cause a not-insignificant amount of distress for members of this identity group is the merest whiff of suggestion that racial inequality continues to shape American life. And so, let me warn you: I'm about to describe a recent interaction with a white family member, who is resolutely "over" race, and the degree to which that exchange has redoubled my conviction that racism stubbornly still exists.