Month: January 2014

Trans-racial Adoption

Growing Up ‘White,’ Transracial Adoptee Learned To Be Black


January 26, 201410:57 AM
Chad Goller-Sojourner, center, and his family.

Chad Goller-Sojourner, center, and his family.

Courtesy Chad Goller-Sojourner

A couple weeks ago, Weekend Edition Sunday host Rachel Martin spoke to Rachel Garlinghouse, a white adoptive mother of three African-American children. Our conversation on transracial adoption drew a lot of responses, so we decided to follow up with another perspective.

Chad Goller-Sojourner is African-American. In 1972, when he was 13 months old, he was adopted by white parents in Tacoma, Wash. He and his siblings are all different races than their parents.

They were raised in a white suburb, but worked hard to expose them to other people who looked like him, and checked out every library book with a black author they could find. They even sent them to a more diverse school in a different neighborhood.

But Goller-Sojourner, now a writer and solo performer based in Seattle, says there was a limit to what his parents could provide.

“One of the things I think was hardest for me is I didn’t have any independent relationships with black people, especially adult black people, till I was an adult,” he says. “I was 25 before I saw a black doctor.”

As a child, he experienced racism before he had the language to understand it, he says.

“For instance, shopping: I learned pretty early on that when people knew I was with this white lady, that they treated me differently,” he says.

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I have a plank in my eye

Before I write this, I need to be very honest.  I have a terrible time with judging others.  It is a sin that I often carry.  

I write posts about hateful liberals.  I make jokes about democrats and many others.  I have pet peeves about many issues.  The funny thing is that I can post about hateful liberals and within minutes a hateful liberal will write back about hateful conservatives.  Who is right and who is wrong with their viewpoints?  Probably both.  It’s easy to find fault in anyone’s viewpoints or actions.  It’s easy to pick out the faults in anyone’s political views or religious views.

Bill Gates was on TV last night talking about his initiatives to alleviate poverty.  Everyone was cheering him as a hero.  I am thankful for what he does but I keep thinking “You still have billions of dollars.  You’re not suffering in anyway.  Go give it all away and then talk to me.”  Am I the only one that is this judgmental?  I still have money in savings that I could give to the poor.  It’s not billions but it is more then the poorest poor have.

A friend posted pictures of her pre-teen son on Facebook.  He had ridiculously long hair.  In my lofty standards of appearance, he looked awful.  I judged him and her as a mother.  Then I learned that he was growing it for “Locks of Love”.  Ummm, I had to swallow a lot of bile on that one.  It is easy for a girl to do that.  It’s not so popular for a boy.

If I have judged you, I apologize.  Notice, I didn’t say “Judged you unfairly”.  Judging is wrong.  Period.  I am pointing out my plank since I often point out specks.  I am glad that God is more merciful with me then I am with others.

Matthew 7:1 “Do not judge, or you too will be judged. 2 For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.

3 “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? 4 How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? 5 You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.


We Sing, We Cry, We Live

On any given day someone somewhere is screaming for joy.  At that same moment, someone somewhere is screaming in pain.  A baby is born.  A person dies.  Someone cries over loss.  Someone cries over excess.  People heal.  People get sick.  Some are rich.  Some are poor.  Some are hungry.  Some are full.  Some are fat.  Some are skinny.  We are young. We are old.

Life is not fair.  Some live too long and die alone.  Some die too young and cause many to morn.  Why?

We plan.  We work.  We save. We study, learn, grow, exercise, We try to do things right.  Does it help? The wicked prosper and the good fall.  One man runs a marathon and falls to a bad heart.  One man drinks and smokes and watches the man run to his death.

We fall.  We cry.  We stand and clean our wounds.  Life slows for a time while we heal but life goes on.  Scars remain but the pain goes. We remember.  We forgive.  Sometimes.  We judge.  We accept.  We evolve.  Do we?

Life is not fair.  Tears fall. Some cry until they have no tears.  Can we laugh when we know others cry?  How do we stand when we are broken?

Psalms 10:12 Arise, Lord! Lift up your hand, O God.
Do not forget the helpless.
13 Why does the wicked man revile God?
Why does he say to himself,
“He won’t call me to account”?
14 But you, God, see the trouble of the afflicted;
you consider their grief and take it in hand.
The victims commit themselves to you;
you are the helper of the fatherless.