As President Donald Trump enflames race relations in America, one C-SPAN caller’s story of redemption offers a glimmer of hope during these dark times.
“Garry from North Carolina” called into C-SPAN’s “Washington Journal” one year ago today and told black guest, Heather McGhee, “I’m a white male and I am prejudice.”
The caller went on to describe his racial fears, noting he “comes off as being prejudiced.”
“I don’t like to be forced to like people, I like to be led to like people through example,” Garry said. “What can I do to change, to be a better American?”
Garry’s wishes came true, as during the last year he’s come to befriend the guest he called for advice.
McGhee is the president of Demos, a progressive policy think tank. When a separate television appearance displayed her Twitter handle, Garry signed up for the service so he could contact her. She offered her phone number and the two began talking. McGhee even traveled to North Carolina to meet him for an elongated conversation.
The two became personal friends.
The amazing redemption story was explained the same way it began, with Garry calling into C-SPAN Friday.
“There are so many things I did not know that I thought I knew,” he said. “I depended on the media for my information. I looked at television shows like ‘Cops’ and ‘Gangland’ and these programs that portray minorities in a negative way,” he said. “I don’t have the opportunity to come from a diverse area. I live in the rural South.”
“He’s really done a transformation of his life and taken this on as a really mission-driven journey,” she said. “He’s chronicling all the racism he observes and sees in his own friends’ circle and life, Confederate flags he’s never really noticed or seen the harm in before.”
Garry noted, “even if you are a white supremacist or any kind of a nut, you can always get on the Internet and find someone that agrees with you, that makes your views okay.”
A C-SPAN caller asked a black guest how to stop being prejudiced. Here's how she responded. https://t.co/mIDQH4hyQ9
— Garry civitello (@garry_civitello) December 17, 2016