In Transit

“CAN I HAVE YOUR ATTENTION,” the large black man yelled to a crowded train car. Yes, it matters that he’s black.

“I JUST GOT OUT OF PRISON.”

Great start.

“I SERVED FOR EIGHT YEARS, AND I PROMISED MYSELF I WOULDN’T RESORT TO LYING OR STEALING OR ANYTHING ILLEGAL. BUT I NEED YOUR HELP.”

Setting the bar high.

“I BROUGHT TWENTY RESUMES WITH ME. DOES ANYONE KNOW WHERE I CAN WORK?”

Silence.

“ANYTHING WOULD HELP, EVEN A QUARTER.”

Unrelenting, remorseless silence.

“Thanks for your time,” he drifts away, dejected but determined.

The one black woman on the train gets up and gives him a dollar. Yes, it matters that she’s black. Clearly it fucking matters.

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