Struck A Nerve, Did I?

For the first time since starting this blog, I received..let’s see..what shall I call it..’nasty mail’. Apparently, some took exception to the post “The Boston Marathon Bombing Suspects’Downgraded from Black to White or would that be Upgraded?'”

Now, I shall take a moment to explain something, not that I have to but I want to. As anyone can see from my picture, I am a person with a ‘permanent tan’ and I have had more hate aimed at me, more nastiness aimed at me, than I can shake a stick at. It comes with the territory. Is it fair? Is it right? Is it justified? No! But that hasn’t stopped those who have a problem with my complexion or that I have the nerve to have an opinion, back it up with facts and post it for all and sundry to see, from renaming me, so to speak. As much as I am sensitive to the plight of others, I have a ‘teflon coating’. Calling me the ‘N’ word, doesn’t set my blood to boil, it means that I have ‘struck a nerve’, exposed YOUR ‘achilles heel’. Trust me, it’s good for you! Get all of that pent up hate and anger at me out of your system because it does not bode well for your blood pressure stats. Not to mention that it has done not one bit of good because I will not, nor shall I ‘back off’. I intend to continue to put the truth out there. I will not be intimidated by racial slurs. Obviously, since I am posting online, I expect the ignorant to pop in every now and then, if only to let me know that ignorance is still in abundance and happily eager to make me aware that ignorance is not going anywhere anytime soon. More’s the pity.

The really sad part is that when the words Black and White are thrown together, it causes rage, ignorance, insanity, intolerance and madness to rear up and distort the thinking of what should otherwise be considered, rational minds. In other words, we cannot have a discussion on race relations in this country when so many enter into the throes of an apoplectic attack whenever confronted with the truth as told by someone with a permanent tan. It does not matter what that truth is, especially if it debunks and sheds light on lies, stereotypes and misinformation about those in society who are viewed as ‘inferior’ by some. Be that as it may, I will shed even more light. No ethnic group is superior to another. You may believe that you are superior, but your belief is misguided. Here, let me sum it up for you with a repost:

A Reflection On My Complexion

I was born with a permanent tan.
And if I do the best I can,
I still get called a name.
Why must I take the blame?

I had no say when I was born.
So, I don’t understand your scorn.
Why hate me for my complexion?
This could have been your reflection.

I will not let you break me down,
solely because my skin is Brown.
Even if I’m solid Black,
there’s not one human trait I lack.

Throw caution to the wind.
Reach out, you’d find a friend.
I bleed the same as you.
And smile when you do too.

We’re all just one big race.
Trying hard to find our place.
In the grander scheme of things,
strive for love and what it brings.

Written by,

Shelby I. Courtland

Footnote:For many, this will fall on ‘eyes that will not see’, I cannot help that. All I can do is put it out there and never think for one nanosecond that I will not continue to do so… contraire!

8 thoughts on “Struck A Nerve, Did I?

  1. shelby, hope you don’t mind but i went back as well to pick up and repost the comment i gave to this poem back in february.

    the reflection of the heart is where we should all be looking. the inner person is where the greatest beauty can be found. people who choose to remain blinded by prejudice and bigotry have no idea what they’ve been missing by never allowing themselves to accept others who are different from them.

    those who choose to remain blinded miss out.
    those who choose not to be true to their heart live a lie.

    those who stay true to their heart and let their innards show on their outers once in a while, see for themselves what others see in them.

    always be true to your heart.


  2. Thank you Brian! You and I go back a little ways and you know enough about me to know that I will indeed ‘always be true to my heart’. Your words, as always, are wise indeed. I am glad to call you, friend.


    1. Many are friends until disagreement
      forgetting the good times they’ve had.
      Their short time together often is wasted
      this is something i find awfully sad.

      the term today is used way too loosely on the internet and taken on the meaning that belongs with acquaintance. facebook friends, twitter friends, friends lists of our email addresses are perfect examples of how the internet has taken a term from an intimate (not of the sexual nature) relationship and made it a lie of convenience in order to access one another.

      you shelby, i call friend. you will always be more than a name on my email list.


    1. where does one start, plese read:

      Healing The World One Person At A Time

      How does the world fare
      does it need to be healed.
      Seems as though it must
      hate resides in most fields.

      That hate in these fields
      wider spread than you’d think.
      Threatens us all
      damn, our attitudes stink.

      Our ways need some changin’
      that’s real plain to see.
      But knowin’ it’s needed
      ain’t enough, you agree?

      So where do we start?
      How do we mold change?
      There must be a method
      that isn’t too strange.

      And where to begin
      that’s a problem itself.
      Here’s a novel idea
      we start with our self.

      Just look deep inside
      find your faults and your flaws.
      Before ripping others
      with bigoted claws.

      Show love and compassion
      to all that you meet.
      Whether at home, next door
      or out on the street.

      If you can then by chance
      help just one living soul.
      It will be the first step
      toward changing the whole.

      If by changing just one
      and he passes it on.
      Another step’s taken
      we’ve birthed a new dawn.

      Now then the changed
      although only a few,
      Can show others the way
      that they can change too.


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