“I don’t think I was born on third and hit a triple,” I say.
“I know you don’t. But you don’t understand how much women have been kept down. You don’t understand a lot of things.”
My daughter has a lot going on in her personal life.
“Why are you so angry?” I ask.
“I’m supposed to be angry. Don’t tell me I can’t be angry. That’s patriarchal BS.”
I take mental inventory. When I get pulled over by a cop, I do not think, “I hope I don’t die.”
When I get a raise, I don’t think, “I wonder if I’m getting as much as The Man.”
When I make my house payment, I don’t think, “Why can’t I ever afford to own property?”
I take note of the inequity, the unspoken racism and sexism, the institutionalized poverty and suppression of a minimum-wage working class. It’s as though I know I can fly and see others who can’t through no fault of their own. I know the bootstraps argument is faulty. I know it’s easier not to be gay or trans or fluid. I don’t get angry when I hear Black lives matter. Of course, Black lives matter.
I know about all the patriarchal B.S. I know I’m a suburban white man that gets a certain free pass. So how can I not be woke?
“You need to try harder, Dad.”
“I was born this way,” I say, “with the wings. It’s hard to change.”
My daughter’s eyes take me in and she puts her head on my shoulder.
“Just keep trying,” she says, “and maybe someday we’ll all get a chance to fly.”
With a Perspective, I’m Les Bloch.
Les Bloch is an East Bay construction manager.