Why are Most of the People Who Work at Airports of Color? And Pilots White?

Boarding the plane for a recent trip, my daughter inched patiently behind me counting each row we passed anxiously waiting to get to row 26. As we approached our seats she tapped me on the lower back and said, “Daddy, can I sit next to you? Sister can sit next to mommy.”

“If that’s what you want to do, sure.”

We got to our seats, sat down and began digging around for our seat belts. Settling in, I started to untangle my headphones and quickly download some music before setting my phone to airplane mode. My daughter looked out the window curiously. After a minute or so she said, “Daddy, why are most of the people who work in the airport people of color, like the people who drive the carts and at the restaurants and the people on the plane like the pilot and other…whatever they’re called…people who help?”

“The flight attendants?”

“Ya, them. Why are most of them and the pilots white?”

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It Smells Worse than Daddy’s Farts: A Talk about Environmental Racism

“Dad! What’s that smell!” Said my oldest daughter as we drove north on the interstate heading home from the museum.

Chiming in, “Ya dad! It smells worse than your farts!” My younger daughter added.

“That’s the smell of the oil refinery. The wind must be blowing the smell in this direction” I responded with a laugh.

Turning to look at my youngest, my oldest said, “Sister, that’s like at Miss Lupita sometimes, when we’re walking to the park.”

“Ya, dad. When we go to the park with Miss Lupita, sometimes it smells like dog food.” Said my youngest, turning her head to me.

My oldest then added, “Ya, dad Miss Lupita lives close to the dog food factory and when the wind blows towards her house it stinks. You can smell it even if the wind isn’t blowing sometimes.”

“Worse than your farts, sister’s farts, and mommy’s farts put together!” said my youngest as the two kids laughed belly laughs in the back seat.

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