What is it about Hoodies?
This wasn’t going to be my first post, but I can’t get it out of my mind. Several weeks ago, the Re-elect Obama website offered hoodies for sale. My first thought upon seeing it was “oh no.” my second thought was “now why did you think that?”
As a woman-of-a-certain-age, I don’t have much contact with the hoodie-wearing generation. And, a hoodie is just a hoodie. Or is it? What does it represent? Why do I feel discomfort, even from the safety and comfort of my car, when I pass a hoodie-wearing male, white or black?
I know that it is irrational. The parking lot attendant at my YMCA wears a hoodie. He is warm, personable, greets everyone with a smile, helps the infirm up the hill to the door. Yet I have to consciously “get by” his attire to feel comfortable with him.
I didn’t set out to be a hoodie-phobe. But certainly lurking in my unconscious is a left-over suspicion – a hoodie covers too much, and that makes me nervous.
The Florida tragedy brought me up short, made me look at my own unconscious fears. And facing them dispels their power exposes my mindless prejudices. I understand the hoodie demonstrations. I won’t be wearing one, but I understand. And consider me chastised and thoughtful.