Just had THE single most painful lunch with a heavyweight in the local banking industry.
It was me, Dad, and the banker — who happened to be African-American.
The lunch was going really well . . . until my father decided it was time to lecture the banker at great length and very loudly on how the local, wealthy white community can rescue the black community from itself (my sister Alison Smith knows EXACTLY what transpired, having seen our father give this very same lecture at a political fundraiser two weeks ago. But at least when he did it then it was given to a room full of like-minded white folks).
Dad thinks that everything that’s “wrong” with the black community can be fixed if only a bunch of wealthy white folks like him would just go into the African-American community and “adopt” some “at risk” black kids and thus divert them from the life of crime they most certainly will embark upon were it not for the help of the good hearted, rich white folks.
The first time he expounded upon this subject I told him that I found it deeply offensive on so many levels that I couldn’t even count them and that I would imagine most if not every African-American would too.
The poor banker — wanting our family business — smiled and nodded uncomfortably during the fifteen minutes that this lecture was being given. I elected to say nothing rather than put the banker on the spot and have to comment one way or another one the deep stupid that my father had elected to unleash. Afterward I said to my father that I’m sure the banker really appreciated Dad’s patronizing noblesse oblige.
It just goes to show — you can have a masters degree from Princeton and a law degree from Harvard and still be a clueless fucking redneck.