Now and then I read a story so intense that it takes me a few weeks to shake the thought of it. The Color of Love by Gene Cheek is such a story.
Gene is a mid fifties white male with an extremely rare story of being caught in the middle of his Caucasian mother and his African American Step father’s relationship in the Jim Crow south. Yes, there were multiracial relationships during the 50’s and 60’s, but Gene’s story is unique. After much horrific abuse by her white husband, she left and started a secret affair with a black man. This secret was well kept until his mother got pregnant and gave birth to a baby that was obviously black. This affair changed Gene’s life forever. His mother was taken to court and charged with neglect – based solely on the relationship. Although the charges were brought by her ex-husband and his family, they did not want custody of Gene – they simply wanted him taken away from his mother. They were successful in getting Gene torn away and thrown (literally) into the foster care system.
Sometimes I think we tire of reading stories of racial abuse that took place during the 50’s and 60’s. There was so much hate and abuse. They are hard to read because I tend to suffer with the victims every time. But when I met the author and listened to him tell his story – I actually wanted to read the book again. His wisdom coupled with his philosophy on race is amazing. He has put everything into a prospective that levels the playing field for all the players, both good and evil. Most important, he has come to terms with his past. And that, in and of itself, is not easily achieved by many people. Mr. Cheek states, “The past has a way of interfering with the future whether we want it to or not”. That is a profound statement. It is how we handle the fallout from our past that matters.
I am happy to add this book to my collection. For more information or to purchase this book, it is listed on several sites including Barnes and Nobel.Com and Amazon or contact the author at firstname.lastname@example.org.