I was born and raised in Topeka by my single mother, a descendant of Irish immigrants; my father is African-American and Native American. I often joke that at birth I won the Minority Bingo. My prize was a unique culture, but growing up, I noticed a persistent lack of opportunity.
I didnt feel seen, respected, or valued by those who represented me in the halls of power. I imagine that sentiment is something many of us share, regardless of whether youre urban or rural, black or white.
As a kid, my understanding of rural communities was only based on hearsay and stereotype.