Words from an interviewee:
I experience microaggressions all the time. I got an undergrad degree from an Ivy League, I have a law degree, in terms of education I'm a one percenter. But even I have endless stories of poor engagements with police, shopkeepers, fellow coworkers, students, taxicabs, everyday. It consumes some space constantly.
To Conservative White folks who complain about folks talking about racism all the time, it is exhausting to have this conversation because you're not acknowledging what's plainly true. I also don't trust White elitist liberals.
When I was in college, there was a student-run store. It had some robberies. I'm walking in to get some food. I see my roommate come in to the store. You're supposed to show your ID. They weren't asked to show theirs. I have to show mine. I get back to my dorm and my classmate is giggling -- White girl -- saying openly that she stole something from the store.
The origins of the United States came from Enlightenment principles... at the very same time people who looked like me were enslaved, Native Americans were victims of genocide. There are all kinds of ways our country didn't live up to that. You cannot base yourself on those kinds of principles and continue to enslave people.
Unfortunately, it's [racism] just so baked in. So much of the American story is having these extremely high-minded goals and falling short. ...But people don't achieve things they don't try to reach. Having a goal is important.