Turk Bauer Quotes in Small Great Things
They were all wearing black shirts with a logo over the chest: NADS. "What's that stand for?" I asked.
"North American Death Squad," Raine said. "It's kind of our thing."
I wanted one of those T-shirts so bad. "So, like, how do you get to be a part of it?" I asked, as casually as I could manage.
One of the other guys laughed. "You get asked," he said.
I decided at that moment I was going to do whatever it took to get an invitation.
I think about Ruth walking down the street in East End and wonder how many other residents questioned what she was doing there, even if they never said it to her face. How incredibly easy it is to hide behind white skin, I think, looking at these probable supremacists. The benefit of the doubt is in your favor. You're not suspicious.
"They promised us we'd be part of something bigger than us. That we'd be proud of our heritage and our race. And maybe that's, like, ten percent of the whole deal. The rest is just hating everyone else for existing. Once I started thinking that, I couldn't stop. Maybe that's why I felt like shit all the time, like I wanted to fucking bust someone's face in constantly, just to remind myself that I could. That's okay for me. But that's not how I want my kid to grow up."
What would happen if I ran into him on the street? At a Starbucks? Would we do the man hug thing? Or would we pretend we didn't know each other? He knew what I was, on the outside, just like I knew what he was. But in jail, things were different, and what I'd been taught to believe didn't hold true. If we crossed paths now, would he still be Twinkie to me? Or would he just be another nigger?
I have been thinking about what Odette Lawton said: if I hadn't spoken out against the black nurse, would this have ended differently? Would she have tried to save Davis the minute she realized he wasn't breathing? Would she have treated him like any other critical patient, instead of wanting to hurt me like I'd hurt her?
"You think you're a respected member of a community—the hospital where you work, the town where you live. I had a wonderful job. I had colleagues who were friends. I lived in a home I was proud of. But it was just an optical illusion. I was never a member of any of those communities. I was tolerated, but not welcomed. I was, and will always be, different from them."
My head actually aches from holding three incompatible truths in it: 1. Black people are inferior. 2. Brit is half black. 3. I love Brit with all my heart.
Shouldn't numbers one and two make number three impossible? Or is she the exception to the rule? Was Adele one, too?
I think of me and Twinkie dreaming of the food we craved behind bars.
How many exceptions do there have to be before you start to realize that maybe the truths you've been told aren't actually true?