Adrienne - thank you for your comment, and my apologies for the long response time.
The story about my teacher wasn't meant to drive home any racial bias that held me down as a kid. I also had a teacher who told my parents at a conference that she thought I would be the one who invented a machine to bring dinosaurs back. Either story is funny; the first didn't deter me; and teachers do say a lot in the course of a child's education. I didn't then think of her remark as race-based; as a thinking person after that, yes, I considered the possibility ... but ultimately, no. She never said "Hispanic kids can't become NFL quarterbacks." Honestly, that's the only way I could ever ascertain racism against me, if someone spelled it out in such terms.
And I don't argue that issues aren't real for people of color. The point of my post was that the constant reminder of it irks me. Is that right or wrong? It's hard to say. It's how I feel, from my perspective.
Every day that I can thrive in life and my career and not even think about bias against me is a good one. A vast majority of days have gone that way, and for that I'm grateful - because I know so many others don't experience that.
I'm fairly certain my daughter's failure to take the offer of a hand up had nothing to do with her father's perceptions of anything. She made her own choice in that moment, the same as you and I could look back on our experience and point out opportunities we went either way on in the face of similar situations.
"Disproportionately affects" is nothing to be thankful for, whether it's real or imagined. I'd like to be considered part of the whole, just another man trying his best for himself and to be kind to those around him. To me, I feel as if those who believe even more staunchly that we've nothing to complain about, right or wrong, probably get irked at the mention of that phrase, too, for different reasons. Again, it's just my perception, similar to a preference for Duke's mayo over Kraft. That is a poor comparison to race relations, but the point I'm hoping to make is that all of our experiences and perceptions are different. Mine is not correct for everyone, but it is for me - as is the stance you presented here, and for which I'm grateful.
It's hard to say whether cognizance of any disproportional effects played a role in my daughter's college admittance. She grew up in a black neighborhood, educated in charter schools, and has excellent grades (unlike her father!) While I acknowledge the roles people of all types have played in helping people like us, I also know we have no control over that, but can listen, learn, study, and interact with others as you and I have in this forum.
Again, thank you.