“‘Can I Walk With You?’ I Was Going to Ask You the Same Thing!”: White Woman Challenges Us to “Cross the Barrier”


“I went on my daily work walk. Today I went alone… as sometimes that happens.

I headed down the street and as I’m walking, I see this young man on the other side of the street. Actually, I heard him first… he was singing and rapping, and I thought man he is jamming out! He saw me look at him and yelled across to me. We exchanged ‘Hellos’ and continued our walks, separately, in the same direction, with a very busy street dividing us.

We hit the intersection, my initial thought was turn Erin, turn right and walk around the block. Something in me kept on forward. As we both kept going, we looked at each other and laughed. I yelled out across the street…

‘Can I walk with you?’

He replied, ‘I was going to ask you the same thing!’

I crossed the street.

We walked for 15 minutes more.

We discover how much we have in common and yet how different we are.

I asked him, ‘How are you holding up with all this?’

He was honest, so was I.

We snapped a picture because I wanted to remember him, remember this moment.

This is Dez. A son, a father, a friend and damn good soul.

We agreed to remain in touch and teach each other. He thanked me for crossing the barrier.

Here is what I learned today… cross the barrier.”

**This post was written by Erin Turner Pittinaro and originally appeared on her Facebook page

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