BREVITY's Nonfiction Blog

By Debbie Hagan

zztwinblackClifford Thompson grew up in the post-civil rights era in a black neighborhood in Washington, D.C., raised by an extended, loving church-going family who made sure he made it to college.

I grew up in the post-civil rights era too, but in a white Kansas City suburb. My parents were loving church-going people who also steered me towards college.

Thompson grooved to the Jackson 5, Fifth Dimension, the Spinners, the Ohio Players, and the Temptations. He watched Mary Tyler Moore, Flip Wilson Show, Good Times and The Jeffersons.

I watched those shows too and listened to Motown, swooned to Smokey Robinson, and gyrated to Sly and the Family Stone. So for a microsecond I believe Thompson and I had more or less same childhood.

 It’s his mention of All in the Family that shakes me back to reality. His family laughed at Archie Bunker—an old-fashioned…

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