A Graduation in Parsons / Integrated Balconies


Drove down to Parsons, KS recently to attend the graduation of a kid I adore. My wife and I took him in when he was twelve, when his single mom was struggling, and when things weren’t so good at home.  He just needed a stable place to call his own for awhile, and a man’s love.  Later on he moved back home, where things are now great and where he has wonderful stepdad, but he still lives with us each summer and goes on vacation with us each July.


Parsons is near the OK line, and more Southern than Midwestern.  That’s why it was so cool in this graduating class to see so many Black and Hispanic kids receiving honors, and the town itself very well integrated.  Decades ago those kids wouldn’t have had that opportunity or support, and even if they would have been allowed to cross the stage with the Whites, their parents would have had to sit in balcony of this old auditorium.  Damn, this country’s come a long way–though it still has a long way to go.


Anyway I adore this kid–I mean young man–but the punk’s taller than I am now.  Also I look 50, damnit.  Well, it’s time.

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