From: LORETTA COOMER
Being with you for as many years as I have been with you, I should have a lot more conscientiousness and guilt than I do have. Many times I have thought about the black people in our congregation who have been through so much, suffered so much injustice. As a result of being black, and yet somehow ma[nag]ed to avoid the issue. Oh! Yes! I have felt guilty for being the same color of skin as their oppressors and have cried about it because I’m sure I have reminded some beautiful black person of someone they hated I have lived with that ever since I’ve known you. So much so that it used to irritate me (and still does) when I see some of our lighter-skinned people continuously sitting together or more than 2 or 3 sitting together with the room full of black people. You have made me that observant.
I often feel bad because I have to scold or be forceful with black seniors a lot in the food serving line, but also realize they too have been conditioned and sometimes respond only to “white” authority – and that makes me very angry. The black sisters serving can tell some people something and that person gets mad. Then I’ll say the same thing and they are very nice and accept it and [go on] their way. This happens 2 or 3 times a day and it causes some hostility from the other servers.