Race in Small Town America: An Old Friend Contacted Me

Just recently an old friend contacted me, whom I hadn’t spoken to or seen since Jr. High.

I didn’t realize right away that it was old friend contacted me on a social media site that I won’t mention. But the person sent me a picture of two boys. One of the boys looked a lot like me, and that caught my attention.

As it turned out, one of the boys in the photograph was indeed me. I’m the black kid on the left (yikes).

Kevin Jackson with Jr High friend

James Williams and I are laughing about who knows what. We had a lot of laughs back then.

James gave me his phone number, so I called him right away. Though I was swamped with work, he and I reminisced for over an hour.

James and I ran track together, and were the Craig James/Eric Dickerson of our town; only not as good. But we weren’t bad.

James played halfback and I played wingback on the Brady Jr. High football team. James went on to play in college, and I pursued track and martial arts.

He and I discussed the good old days, and caught up on just about everybody in our graduation class of less than 50.

I’m sure you have friends where though it may have been years, even decades since you’ve seen him or her, it was like you hadn’t skipped a beat. Our conversation was just like that.

What we did discuss was the little town in the Deep South where we grew up, and how we grew up. We marveled that there were no racial incidents growing up, as the media might suggest. Between the two of us, we honestly couldn’t remember a single racial incident in the city.

That race was never an issue wasn’t surprising to us. People have better things to do in small towns. They work farms and ranches, or other jobs to make ends meet. Also, people in small towns know each other.

I was surprised to find out that James followed my new career. He told me that he was proud of my work, and said he tells people that we grew up together.

He added that many people from my hometown see me as a celebrity of sorts. {I did mention this is a very small town.}

Both James and I traveled extensively as adult. We lamented that cities are where racism is born and bred. Regardless, people say it’s small southern towns that are the hotbed of racism. That’s a lie.

James retired from law enforcement, and had been chief of police in a couple of locations. He had seen man’s inhumanity to man, and in some decent sized cities. The racism he saw there was real, and generally perpetrated by Leftists.

I come by my love of this country and its people honestly. It’s small town values that have been instilled in me. Growing up on a ranch, and being part of small town America, I feel fortunate. My friends from that little town remain some of my best friends in life.

James still sports all his hair. I told him that I stopped wasting testosterone on hair a few decades back.


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