I. Though throughout the world, the entirety of humanity has to deal with the ever-growing problem of racism and relentless stereotypes, and sometimes it can be quite difficult to create an example to explain the daily pain many go through.
A. In Sherman Alexie’s short story titled, “The Loneranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven,” the American Indian narrator clues the audience in with subtle hints of how the problem of racism has negatively impacted his life. Specifically, a past instance involving a few basketball games made the narrator turn away from a potential athletic future due to another white male.
B. To a more ignorant audience, the example of an attempted basketball competition could appear simply as another failure in the eyes of the narrator, yet the event holds a deeper significance that begins a pattern of giving up because of the stereotypes of an unfortunate American Indian.
II. American Indians are commonly misunderstood and become the center for sketchy stereotypes, destroying any thoughts of a good first impression.
A. “You should be more careful when you drive,” the officer said. “You’re making people nervous. You don’t really fit the profile of the neighborhood” (2)
B.In relevance to opening statements, the reading audience can begin to see the negative effects of racism and stereotypes, even in the smallest of neighborhoods.
C “I want to tell him that I didn’t really fit the profile of the country but I knew it would just get me into trouble” (2).
D. In addition to the first quote, this example provides an even closer insight into the damaging effects of common assumptions to a basic human being.
E. (Say in another way) In relevance to opening statements, the reading audience can begin to see the negative effects of racism and stereotypes, even in the smallest of neighborhoods.
III. As the narrator slowly improves his skills in basketball, he becomes quite good until another white becomes involved, crushing his confidence.
A. “I jumped into the game and played well for a little while. It felt good. I hit a few shots, grabbed a rebound or two, and played enough defense to keep the other team honest. Then that white kid took over the game. He was so good” (3).
B. Up until the addition of an athletically talented white male, the character in this story was starting to accept the good feelings of success. Unfortunately, he let the mentally damaging idea of another “dominant” race get to his head and backed out of the competition.
C.“The white kid- he’s play college ball back East and would make the Knicks team a couple of years on. But we didn’t know any of that would happen. We just knew he was better that day and every other day” (3).
D. The fact that it only takes a simple white teenager to