Uber App Helps Black Men Beat Taxi Racism

The Root DC's Clinton Yates says that without the app, "one of the realities of being a brother is that hailing a cab is a nearly impossible task."

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Uber

The Root DC's Clinton Yates says that without the app, "one of the realities of being a brother is that hailing a cab is a nearly impossible task."

As a black man living in the city, I pray that the District doesn't run Uber -- the service that lets people reserve luxury-sedan rides via their smartphones -- out of town. Even in our "post-racial society," one of the realities of being a brother is that hailing a cab is a nearly impossible task.

It's a familiar story: If I'm not wearing a shirt and tie, I'll rarely try to get a cab. And if I've got on my usual get-up of mohawk, T-shirt and

Vans sneakers, people laugh openly if I stick out my hand and/or yell, "Taxi!" It's like the expressions on their faces say: "Ha! You think you're getting a cab looking like that? Negro -- please."

That's why I'm dismayed by the proposed regulations that could potentially put Uber out of business. It would be a step backward for those of us who are willing to pay more money for a respectable transaction rather than take our chances on the street and be degraded in the process.

Read Clinton Yates' entire piece at The Root DC.

The Root aims to foster and advance conversations about issues relevant to the black Diaspora by presenting a variety of opinions from all perspectives, whether or not those opinions are shared by our editorial staff.

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