short story about a man who is lawyer and why he decides to come a soldier the reason why
|A Hope for The Future
You never think much of the color of your skin till someone treats you based off it. The name was Elmer. I was part of 369th infantry regiment one of hardest fighting infantry regiment in world war one. We fought thick or thin for the hope to someday have equality. But we never did see it. Here's how I got the brilliant idea to sign up it was back in 1908 when I really got a taste of the reality of being colored.
I was just finishing school and was walking back my dad’s place. He was a fairly wealthy white father who managed to find me a school to attend. I decided to take a short cut to get home faster and walk to the main road although, Mama always sound so sad when she described what down town Brooklyn looked like, I do not know why all these massive building and roads full of horses and carts each one with a story but then I realize something I was the only dark skinned person and some these other kids came over to me I thought they were going to helpful or be fun to play with but I should of known better before I knew what happen they all pounced on me as a lion strikes its prey I yell, no helped came but plenty watched as I was kicked and beaten on every spot and angle then finally someone picks me up. I was curled up thinking maybe I was saved no he shouts " aye a chimp got out again" drops me I waited for everyone to leave I was crying I knew this type of stuff happens all the time but falsely believe it never happen to me.
Ran home. These kids were try to keep up but if it’s one thing I excel at running and jumping in those days. Running so much to be afraid of .Why I am I keep thinking why I am I running each time my foot landed soft enough to insure it be hard to follow by sight or sound alone. I have always regarded everyone as equals and growing up I just assumed everyone else did. When I stepped in the door my mom was in the kitchen and she ask me “how was your day and did you learned anything” then as she walk in to the entrance way how she normally do, she grasped and run over to me and ask me how I got the black eye and bruises I told her I tripped and had hit the ground hard she knew I was lying. Later that night my father came home but he didn’t seem phased by my badly beaten face. After dinner he calls me to his study and sat me down I remember if it was like yesterday “Son the world is a rough place and you are not going to have an easy path ahead of you but I believe you can do whatever you set your mind to, but people are going to beat you and hurt you but do let them drag you down”.
Walking in the same spot in down Brooklyn where that fateful day happen I can feel people stare. It is rare to see one of my race walking down town with a formal frock coat and black soft felt Homburg. Just got out of court for the day feeling good just freeing that young man. He was too poor the hire a proper lawyer so they gave me the case. It was a textbook case he was charged with resisting arrest and sexual assault. He plead not guilty I ask him to identify the lady who he allegedly assaulted he couldn’t and requested for her to identified him from a line up which she could not. I realized she was never assaulted. Her dad convinced her to lie to give him cause to fire this young man. These people are very unjust even to their own people and to say they are unjust to my kind be an understatement. We are less than the dirt they walk on but even with that I was a lawyer. One of the few, I now represent the United States law.
As I grew up then came to high school on the first day I walked in to Mr. Minor’s English class and sat down in the back of the class. It was a small class room and only enough tables and chairs for 20 students I took the back closest to windrow. We waited patiently try my teacher walk in I was looking outside when he walked in. I never realize anyone African America could ever become a teacher. My peers whispered among themselves, of course I was alone but he looked at me and smiled one of the few smiles I ever saw from him. As my first year when on I found myself looking up to him wondering how he got the job where he study. The last day of classes he sat down and told me “You’re the first color student I taught and like how you do take a lot of pride in your work just do not let anyone tell you otherwise” he then kick me out before I had a chance to ask him this burning questions.
I was getting nearly straight A+’s and a few A’s so I was in my last year finishing up my last math assignment of the year I realized there was these guys standing behind me taking notes off my work I did as anyone I when to my math teacher to complain as I was explaining he cut me off and he insure me it would be dealt with properly when I received my work back with large zero cover the whole front page. Just in shock but I never complained again I couldn’t afford another zero.
Looking at my old high school now it’s still there red brick it looks as if bricks were made with blood. I remember look back at the high school see my old English teacher Mr. Minor watch out his window. The wing of the school that his room was on is now destroyed to make room for a new additions of the school. How the vine grows up the sides and the trees are larger but nothing changes. There was still a piece of rope tied to the lowest branch of the old oak tree just the thought of it sends chills up my spine. School name carved onto a block limestone and brass place over the “lic” in public fall off well I was there, it’s still that way now.
Wondering around I came to realize the town was void of people I was coming back around to the court house I work out of. I was wondering how there was so little people in town I knew the war meant that many families were broken and spilt. There women working now due to the lack of men as well African Americans. It’s remarkable just how much this war has affected Brooklyn, not just Brooklyn, United States of America, the whole world. As well as the whole world is at war I guess that why they called it the Great War the war to end all wars. This change might be a good thing in the long run, maybe the spark that ignite the fire that will shift power from rich white men.
Turn the next corner around the block I found a crowd of people an even stranger fact it was Africans and at the dance hall. Just out of pure curiosity I walk in and there was recruitment officers I couldn’t believe it they are volunteer and they are accepting them I exclaimed “how could this be “I didn’t think I said it very loud but this young boy maybe high school he told me” there talk about the war, they losing more man then they have so they getting us niggers join”. Whatever the reason this is it is a chance to prove to my country that we are equals together we will win this war by fighting side by side. All of us who signed up that day would never regret it.