Image description by Mel Chua. Please improve! The original comic is from Race Conscious. If anyone knows how to pass on this image description (or a better version of it) to the original authors so it can be listed with the comic, that would be much appreciated. I am only posting it here because I could not find a way to contact the authors about adding this to the original comic.
The entire comic is done in a pen-and-ink style with watercolor-like coloring. Each paragraph is a new frame.
First frame: the exterior of an apartment building. Title: Race Matters. Subtitle, on the building’s exterior sign: A story about white privilege.
“This is Jamal. He grew up in a federally-subsidized one bedroom apartment in he Bronx.” A black baby in green overalls holding a pink rabbit smiles at the viewer; the walls and floor of the room he is in are visibly cracked and worn down.
“This is David. He grew up in a federally-subsidized one bedroom apartment in he Bronx.” A white baby in a blue shirt with a blue pacifier plays with orange blocks in a similarly shabby room.
“Jamal’s mom knew education was essential to his future.” A young Jamal sits on an adult’s lap; the adult is dark-skinned and their face is not visible. The adult is reading a book titled “Be Boy Buzz” to Jamal.
“David’s mom knew this, too.” A young David writes numbers an a sheet of paper, while a white-skinned adult sits next to him with their hand resting reassuringly on his shoulder. The adult’s face is not visible.
“Jamal did well in school, but his teachers doubted his intellect.” A young Jamal has an assignment handed back to him, with a score of 100 written across the top in red ink. The adult handing the paper back to Jamal has white skin, and is saying “How did YOU do so well on this test?” Jamal’s face looks dismayed.
“David did well in school, and his intelligence was routinely reinforced by his teachers.” A young David has an assignment handed back to him, with a grade of A+ and a smiley face across the top in red ink. The adult handing the paper back to David has white skin, and is saying, “You’re so smart - I am going to recommend that you skip a grade!” David is smiling.
“Jamal received a full scholarship to college - but his professors routinely assumed he did not belong there.” A college-age Jamal wearing a backpack and carrying a book faces a white-looking professor sitting in an armchair, who is telling him “You’re only here because you’re black.”
“David received a full scholarship to college - when he failed out, his professors made excuses for him.” A college-age David wearing a backpack looks sad; a white-looking professor puts their hand on his shoulder and says “Look, you are an incredibly smart kid… you just had some bad luck. I’ll talk to the dean to see if we can give you another chance.”
“It took Jamal almost a full year after college to find his first job.” A partial view of a laptop screen with a section of an email showing on it. The visible section of the email reads: “Dear Mr. Jamal, I regret to inform you have not been selected for this po(screen cuts off)… we’ve received a record n(screen cuts off).”
“Thanks to connections, David landed several job offers.” A handshake between two white/light-skinned hands in the center of the frame; one person is saying “Welcome to the team!”
Image description note (not a comic frame): up until this point, each “Jamal” frame has been on the left, and each “David” frame has been on the right - the two stories proceeded in parallel down the page. The remaining frames are on the last page, and Jamal and David’s frames are beginning to merge together.
“None of the success that both Jamal and David achieved changed their daily experiences of a Black man compared to as a White man.” On the left, an adult Jamal is walking through a restaurant; a white person with a beard calls out to him “can I get more wine?” to which Jamal responds, with a sad look, “I don’t work here.” On the right, an adult David is seated at a table with several other white people; one has long hair and is wearing a red dress, and another’s face is not visible. Everyone has martini and wine glasses and is laughing.
Long shot: Jamal has his hands above his head and is standing on a sidewalk facing two police officers, one black and one white. A police car is parked nearby on the street. Several nice-looking two-story homes are visible in the background. Jamal is saying “Please, officers, I live here. Let me show you.”
Medium shot: David is in the driver’s seat of a convertible, and a white cop is leaning over the passenger side window, saying “Remember to watch the lights, son. Have a good one!” to which David replies, “Thanks, officer!”
“Race has had a huge impact on their experiences and colored their perspectives.” An adult Jamal and David face each other. David holds a champagne stem in his hand, and says to Jamal, “Race doesn’t matter. I grew up in the projects, and look where I am now!” Jamal’s arms are crossed with a slightly harried expression, and a thought bubble forms above his head: “How can I explain this without coming off as the ‘angry Black man’?”
Comic ends. Below the last panel is some text: Copyright 2017 Raising Race Conscious Children, Further Reading: White Privilege - Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack.