Growing up black and living in a prejudicial and racist society is how these two authors “Shame’” by Dick Gregory a young boy whose peers continually to ignorant to him because of his color, poverty and not having a father. In “I Became Her Target,” by Roger Wilkins a young boy is the only black child in and all white, upper –class school. He dealt with racism when his parents moved to a white community.
They both share similarities dealing with racial issues from their teachers and classmates. Both authors experiences different formality dealing with poverty, racism, and ignorance beyond their control.
Both men went on with their lives, but still live with memories they faced growing up. They carried out their experience to help other youngster to understand what they went through and how to rise above their disappointment. Gregory knew he was poor, but he was not aware how different he was compared to his classmate.
His family was living in poverty, wearing brown, orange and white mackinaw that welfare gave out. He would get good from the neighbor and take the long way home because he didn’t want anyone to see him leaving the food truck.
Wilkins didn’t have any worries about poverty; his mother had married a physician but he also faced racism because his parents moved to a white community where blacks didn’t belong. In “Shame,” Dick Gregory’s teacher was so crudely and abruptly pointed out that he was less than the other children in class.
He was placed in the “idiot” desk in the back of the classroom. She would refer him as a troublemaker. He would make noise and poke people to try and draw attention. The thought of being stupid, he couldn’t spell, read or do arithmetic made him feeling a shamed about not being wanted by the other classmates.
In, “I Became Her Target,” Roger Wilkins traced back to his unforgettable memories of hatred but also with memories of a remarkable teacher. Wilkins teacher started off being pleasant to him. She let him answered the first question in class which made him feel important. His teacher knew how to make a lonely child fell welcome and accepted. Then one particular day the teacher threw an eraser at him which causes his pencil to fly across the room. Wilkins claims “Old Deadeye Bean,” by being the only black boy in the classroom was when he was accepted by his classmate.
Dick Gregory, he was innocent and unaware of social difference. His innocence was replaced by a sense a shame when his teacher humiliated him in front of the class. As the teacher was going around the room asking how much their father were donating for the community chest the teacher skipped over him. He wasn’t happy and decides to say something to her and the teacher proceed to tell him. “We are collecting money for you and your kind’. His teacher told his classmate he doesn’t have a father. It made him be shameful; he was embarrassed by being poor and fatherless.
Roger Wilkins, he was the only black boy in the school. They threw stones at him when he would walk home and spat on his bike seat while in class. Coming from Harlem to Grand Rapid, he felt ashamed for being different; he was lonely, friendless and sometimes frightened of the kids. A life lesson which dealt with the authors at an early age, prejudice shouldn’t be carry out by society because they are different. Both men went on to write about their experience with racism, poverty and ignorance so others would understand what they went through.