When I think of school I am caught off guard by the multitude of racialized experiences that sent me daily preparing for battle. I remember the kid that pushed me down in a bus and called me a nigger, stepping on my head as he walked over me and out the swinging doors. I saw kids in seats all around me, oblivious to the behaviors of others because, back then, a push and a shove were common experiences for kids riding to and from home in yellow busses. No one classified such incidences as bullying and frankly, no one really cared. I knew that when I caught the eye of the bus driver as I was getting up. He had seen the incident and did nothing. Said nothing. But he watched me as I got back up, gathered my things, and made my way out the door. On the bus I knew I was on my own.
Like many others during the election campaign, I watched Trump’s “Access Hollywood” video. I didn’t really want to, having already seen “The Apprentice” clip of Trump telling Brande Roderick that it would be a pretty picture seeing her on her knees. That was lewd enough and should have handed him a sexual harassment suit on the spot. But, of course, it didn’t. So, I hesitantly tuned in to his commentary and cringed at the appropriate parts. But it wasn’t just the commentary that got to me, it was also Billy Bush’s insistence that Arianne Zucker give Trump a hug. In that moment, I witnessed the arrogance from a male that a female’s affection is requested—no—demanded—of a woman when it is clear that they are uncomfortable with doing so. Arianne played along and then conceded her place that she was going to be the objectified eye candy to both of their pleasures. Trump’s and Bush’s victorious grins were unmistakable. It was painful to watch. And it hurt.