By Kiersten Willis
The turnout at Cheryle Moses’ annual anniversary party for the Urban Mediamakers organization far exceeded her expectations, even though she didn’t actually know what to expect to begin with. The viral event titled “Come Meet a Black Person,” was held Thursday, Nov. 16 in Lawrenceville, Ga., and saw people with various backgrounds and careers come together and network over chili, cornbread and hot dogs.
For $15, 60-70 Black and white attendees — 50 of which preregistered — mingled at Cornerstone Coworking. From a Black front-end developer to comedians to a white Scoutmaster from the Boy Scouts of America, the discussion was heavy but the mood was light. “Life has been heavy for a lot of people. Everybody that came to the event was like ‘a big weight was lifted,’” Moses told Atlanta Black Star.
The mixer, which benefited the Young Urban Mediamakers program, encouraged non-Black guests to “put aside any pre-conceived notions about the Black community and bring an open mind.”
“We are willing to start the healing,” the slogan for the event said.
“People don’t read, first of all,” Moses said. “So the title, ‘Come Meet a Black Person,’ is not the same as, ‘Come See a Black Person.’ So people who are saying, ‘It’s like we’re animals in a zoo.’ That’s not what that sentence says. If you look up the definition of ‘meet’ it has one definition and if you look up ‘see’ there’s another definition. You go to a zoo to see animals you don’t come to a meeting to see an animal. My sentence is very clear.”
Even though Moses simply didn’t know what to expect, the event grabbed the attention of folks around the country and many let their feelings show online.
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‘Come Meet a Black Person’ Mixer Draws Fierce Reactions from Public