Confession of a Dunce

Jim Culleny in NoUtopia:

Image_segregated_facilitiesWhen I was 18 and in the Navy I sometimes spent 72 hour liberties at home in NJ. I traveled from Norfolk, VA, up and down the Delmarva Peninsula, by means of my thumb. The trip involved a ferry ride across the mouth of Chesapeake Bay from Little Creek to Kiptopeke. This was before the building of the spectacular bridge-tunnel there.

Being a studied lover of ignorance (a real dunce) who managed to make it through high school without ever reading a book cover to cover, I had little sense of, or interest in, what went on in the world beyond local happenings. So, during my first Virginia ferry ride (at about the time Barack Obama was born), I noticed a water fountain marked “colored” and the thought crossed my mind, why would they have a fountain with colored water?

No, really.

I remained stupid for at least the next few minutes until I had to use the john and noticed the bathrooms marked “colored” and “white”. Then, bubbling up through the sludge I had been pouring into my brain came the malevolent belch of the concept “segregation”. It’s not that the idea had not managed to make it’s way in there, it’s just that I was too comfortable and disinterested to notice.

More here.