English one rough draft under our skin

Mary Williams Review Essay September 13, 2018 Getting Free from the Fears and Frustrations that Divide Us "Under Our Skin" delivers a complexity and tensions that so many Americans are afraid to discuss in public. What would impress a reader about this book is that the author is a Football player that is financially stable, educated, and successful but still has experienced the pain and consequences of having dark skin. He has used his platform to discuss the issues that the media are reporting daily. Watson's book examines the media aspect, how he feels and determines what he thinks can connect the divided lines. Watson felt that it didn't matter how much ball he plays or how much money he makes, when he takes off his uniform he is not obsolete from enduring some of the pain that so many African Americans are facing daily. The book is worth reading and it makes a lot of strong points, but it is only recommended among readers as a discussion setting. It is intended to start a conversation and to get each side a starting point to begin that discussion. It also tells the stories of different things that are happening in the world, Watson's childhood and how he uses his circumstances to balance out his life. I felt the need to go through each chapter and review the dynamics of each individual subject, because I was afraid to miss any of the authors points. This book originated from a Facebook post after reading the verdict of the Michael Brown case. The grand jury decided on November 24, 2014 that Darren Wilson would not be indicted of the shooting, because there wasn't any probable cause. This was the day that Benjamin Watson, a New Orleans Saints tight end was playing against the Baltimore Rams. The next day Mr. Watson sits in the car and while waiting on his wife, he decides to write a Facebook post that had twelve titles that described the way he felt. His different feelings included his frustrations, his embarrassment, and his hopefulness just to name 1
a few. This book was designed to be a go to book to start a discussion about race and the division we are experiencing. This book started with one facebook post that had almost 1 million likes that started people to feel comfortable about discussing the issues. Watson broke the book into sections and detailed each chapter about the things he was feeling. He also incorporated his young life and he compared it with the life of his grandfather. This book according to an amazon review (Mitchell,Matt). states that "This is the perfect book for every person who is looking for answers to healing racism in our country". The courage of this young man to enlighten America with the issues we face and what he thinks the solution to ending racism is, is what make me believe that this book is a real discussion that is designed to focus on understanding what is going on and also focusing on a plan to heal. This book is well written, balanced and is not written to victimize the police or African Americans, but mainly to understand both view points and hold each party accountable for their actions. He stated solutions to the problem. He started by admitting that there is a problem and what we can do as to take individual steps toward correcting this problem. Benjamin Watson role of becoming a father shapes his feelings about the future of race and its relations in the world that we live in. Benjamin spends a lot of time with his grandfather pop pop. Pop is more of the character that the audience would like because he has a story to tell. He has seen so much in this world and he feels that you can only go so far up the totem pole. This is how most African Americans felt in Pop Pop days. They were not afforded the same opportunities because of the color of their skin. Watson is angry because the stories of injustice have passed down from generation to generation and he see that it is continuing. Pop said in this chapter that he dodged slavery by 5 generations, but his family still got fined because he jumped in a white only pool and his parents had to pay to have all the water taken out of it so that it could be filled with pure water. Pop Pop served his country and even 2
though he was told that the ceiling is the limit for black folks, Pop made a good life for himself. Watson also states in this chapter that he wants to take some people and say, "Hey you were born in to a race that was victimized by slavery, what are you going to do about it? You are not the only one that has faced disadvantages. Life isn't fair move on from it. We want to point our fingers outwards, but the problem is within. This statement from Chapter 2 (page 42) in the book explains his reasoning for the statement. Watson explains how people need to look inside themselves, being honest, about assumptions and bias that are formed. He also explains that blacks also are racially bias and make assumptions and he admitted to doing it. Looting, violent protest, and lawbreaking only confirm-and in the minds of many, validate the stereotypes and thus the inferior treatment. Watson feels that it is hard to believe that in 1965 black people couldn't vote, they were able to vote but just not in practice. America was stuck in Jim Crow. Blacks and whites were able to be together but separate. Police brutality was still condoned and black was still denied the right to assemble. These were Martin L King days when non-violence was taught. The great struggle for whites and blacks is to learn to accept each other based on our common humanity, the humanity that comes from God. Some chapters could have been better organized by creating another chapter discussing more in- dept the role of the media and how it plays a part in all of this. He also explains that when the media reports something it is always deemed to be true. The media is one of the main sources of the division between us Frustrated was a reference that was used in one of the chapters. Watson explained his frustration and how he was frustrated because he believes that hip hop sends a message that constantly injects useless lyrics into our lives. The author supplies the assumption that hip hop traps us in our own helplessness, different genre but the same lies. It condones, drugs, violence, rape, guns, and never teaches us to respect the police. Watson explained how his father would never condone him listening to 3
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