Alberta Wilson
3 min readOct 12, 2020

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RANDOM ACTS OF RACISM #1020

“He doesn’t appear to be her parent!”

October 2020 and a simple visit to MyEyeDr on Normandy in Jacksonville turned into one of those random racist incidents some don’t believe really happen everyday — going in for a routine eye exam. MyEyeDr is an optometry franchise that has locations in “the Southeast, MidAtlantic, Northeast and Midwest United States” according to their website. This particular office may not be representative of their policies but the sign outside reads “MyEyeDr.” So who knows?

Fifteen-year old Emily was excited about getting her drivers license earlier this year but Covid-19 happened and the actual issuing of the license was postponed because she was temporarily shut-in and the DMV was temporarily shut down. When she finally could go to the DMV with her mom, they were told her vision had deteriorated so she had to get a new eye exam.

The man Emily’s mom is married to is not her biological father but he is her principal male caregiver and they all live together as a family with her two younger siblings just outside of Jacksonville.

The eye appointment was confirmed the way we all get our text message confirmations and Emily’s stepdad took her to MyEyeDr on Normandy Boulevard. Arriving early, they were astonished to learn from the person who greeted them that not having reconfirmed, they had lost their place. They were given a later date. Then…

When they returned ten days later, Emily was refused service because as the woman in the office said referring to her stepdad, “He doesn’t appear to be her parent.” This was after she had asked both of them who the man was. She repeated the statement a few times, “Well, he doesn’t appear to be her parent.” Dad, too annoyed to react according to his feelings, let Mom know the situation and she called the MyEyeDr. office.

Meanwhile Emily polled other waiting patients: “Did they ask you to prove this is your child?”

“Did anybody ask if that was your mom?”

No — No and No!

The office person explained to the frantic woman on the phone: “We have to avoid any problems.” Mom requested written proof of the MyEyeDr policy demanding proof of parentage. Well it’s not written like that but we have to avoid any problems. We need to cover…

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