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Letter to the Editor: Racism is happening in Alexandria

To the editor:

I just want to let the people of Douglas County know that racism in its entirety is well amongst us. Even though it's not happening to the majority, it is affecting people. I am one of the few that it is happening to, but I have also seen and heard about others with the same issue.

As a predominantly white community, it's easy to deny that racism is happening, and when confronted about it or just when someone brings it to their attention they just get uncomfortable and downplay it.

But I want people to know that as a person of color, and those like me, I think it is a huge issue and needs to be addressed because it drains me of my ability to be a human being. When out in the community I am looked at in a way as if I'm a criminal or like I'm not wanted. Some people in the community say they don't feel safe around black people, however, we are the minority and just want to be treated equally.

There have been more than a dozen times where I have been called the "N" word and told that I'm not wanted here, and that I'm not fit for public office, and many other things. I just want to be equal for once and not feel like I'm an outcast, or such a burden in the community. I want to be normal, it has taken so much energy out of me. Douglas County has made me feel less of a human, person, man, and an American. I have died inside.

I have and am still serving in the military, and I feel like the rights that we have fought for and others have died for are being put to use on our own people.

Donald Pittman

(former Alexandria resident)

St. Cloud, MN