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A Father’s Cry

By Calvin Barnes

Interracial relationships are the norm today, but in our small town in the late 1980s, it was still a little taboo.  

I met a young lady of Caucasian descent in one of my classes, and we instantly developed a relationship and fell head over heels in love. From the beginning we faced opposition; our parents were totally against us dating. As I look back, she came from a more affluent and connected family in our community, and I was just a middle-class kid whose heart was consumed by her very presence. Because of the stigma and our parents, we kept the relationship secret to avoid any problems. The only people who had any idea that we were involved were a few isolated friends.  

Our passion was so intoxicating that the more our parents forbade us to be together, the more we desired one another. The best analogy I can think of is like throwing gasoline on an unquenchable fire.  

Eventually, the story takes a turn, and she calls me in a panic explaining that she is pregnant with my child. At that point in my life, I was not mature enough to be a father, and I’m sure that she felt the same way. But the decision to terminate the pregnancy has haunted me for years because I always felt that neither she nor I had the right to decide about the life of our preborn child.  

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