Even if you are colorblind, you see black and white.
"I don't see color," is a popular response when a person is challenged about a racially charged incident.
The fact that Howard Schulz reverted to this old trope when discussing racial issues he had to handle at Starbucks while he was CEO is problematic.
Actually, his entire quasi-Presidential candidacy is problematic.
Somehow journalists who let America down by giving Donald Trump millions of dollars of free air time only to see him turn his campaign and administration against them haven't learned a single lesson in two years.
Now another billionaire signals that he might be interested in running for President. Instead of covering actual candidates with political experience who haven't had lucrative careers making billions of dollars by overcharging customers and underpaying employees, CNN decided to host Schulz for a town hall in Houston.
I don't understand why major media outlets would take Schulz seriously if he formally announced his candidacy. But since he is only flirting with the idea of being a candidate outside the two main parties - assuring the failure of any possible campaign - I certainly don't understand the free air time. After all, if you aren't a candidate for a major party, there are several states - Oklahoma being one of them - where you have virtually no chance to get on the ballot. That isn't a recipe for success.
Earlier this year, after he first discussed the idea of running as a centrist candidate, Schulz asked people not to call him and the other 0.01% crowd "billionaires."
“The moniker billionaire now has become the catchphrase,” Schulz said. He asked people to start calling him and the other people who have more than $999,999 million "people of means" or "people of wealth."
At CNN's town hall this week, Schulz who sees himself as a member of a minority group because he has more money than almost everyone else in the world, assured black people that he doesn't see them as a minority group at all.
When pressed about Starbucks having to shut down all of their locations to do racial sensitivity training after an incident at a Philadelphia location where two black men were arrested due to racial profiling, Schulz told the town hall attendees that he "doesn't see color."
The idea behind the phrase is that everyone is equal. But that isn't what the phrase means. If you don't see color, you don't see all people as equal, you see them as the same. That is entirely untrue.
I have friends of many races, cultures and lifestyles. They aren't the same. That's a good thing, not a problem. There's a reason Baskin Robbins doesn't have 31 buckets of vanilla ice cream behind the counter.
I have a black son and a white son. They are not the same. I don't want you to "not see color" and pretend they are the same. I just don't want you to think less of either of my sons because his skin is a different color.
Seeing color doesn't make you racist. Black people know they are black. Native Americans also have mirrors. Hispanic people know how their heritage and skin tone make them different from you.
None of those groups want to be white. They don't want to be treated like they're white. What people in minority groups want is for treating someone like they are white and treating them like a member of a minority to actually be the same treatment.
Seeing someone as equal doesn't mean seeing them as white or without color. Equality means a white son born in this country and a black son born in Ethiopia are loved and treated the same despite obvious differences.
Seeing color isn't wrong. Color making a difference in how you view or treat someone is.