Chris Lebron on happiness and race:
‘“Daddy, are you happy?” This is a question my son asks me on a regular basis. It is a beautiful yet sad question. It is beautiful because it is proof that my state of being registers with him, and that fact is the basis of essential virtues like sympathy, friendship and love. It is sad because often I am not happy and my son sees it just like I saw it on my own father’s face with troubling regularity.’
‘Now that I know what this vision is, I am no longer interested in what my father passed down to me. Neither are these students sitting in and protesting for an educational environment that truly and fully welcomes them. Neither are the residents of America’s inner cities holding vigils or expressing grief and rage. If there is a hope it is this – that the imaginative vision has slipped enough knots to make itself a force in an unjust world. The new hope, the one that I and many others hold, is that the day will come when my grandchild will look at my son’s face and ask: Daddy, why are you so happy?’
Read the article here.
I sympathize with this essay, but I wonder if a more just society will make melancholy disappear.