I loved Aaryn Belfer's column ["Bail setting is racially imbalanced," May 13], as well as her previous work.
My white eyes were opened on the subject of racism in the late '60s when I took a pair of classes at San Diego State University while trying to appear to be enough of a student to avoid the draft.
From Dr. Winslow's Criminology class, I learned from factual studies that the vast majority of white kids nationwide who were caught in a car that did not belong to them, were cited with the misdemeanor of "joy riding." Conversely, the vast majority of black kids in the same circumstance were booked for felony car theft.
From Dr. Gillette's sociology class, which was primarily experiential, we learned about racism firsthand. With two white partners of the opposite sex answering classified ads for apartment vacancies, the vast majority were shown the apartment and given the option of renting it. When a mixed couple answered the same ad, they were invariably told the apartment had been rented and was no longer available.
As a youngster growing up on C Street in Golden Hill, there were no black families in the immediate area because of "red lining" by realtors and lenders who determined that black families would be limited to homes south of Market Street.
During a time when I wrote for a local daily, I observed that local sports pages were, in a de facto way, limited to a single black and a single female on their staffs.
Thanks for tackling the issue with honesty and facts, things that much of my white America ignores on the issues of racism in this country.
Jim Brown, Tierrasanta
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