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Living in America as half of an interracial couple isn’t that unique these days, but it doesn’t feel all that common when my wife and I interact with the general public. I will not discuss overt acts of prejudice or racism. That will have to wait for another day. My focus now are all the subtle actions from others that send the message to my wife and me that we don’t belong together.
Here’s a situation that happens quite frequently: My wife and I are standing side-by-side at a check-out counter of some store and the store employee addresses her or me, “Hi! How can I help you?” It seems quite normal, until the transaction is complete and the checker turns to the other one of us and asks, “Hi! How can I help you?” That’s when we annoyingly respond, “We’re together.” In response, we’ll hear an embarrassed, “Oh!” Sometimes one of us will raise the ring finger for extra emphasis. I guess that’s one way to send someone a message by giving them the finger.
Another case: We’re walking through a crowded area like a busy sidewalk, a fair, a sporting event, etc.