Divided By Race: Allison and Bryant

Divided By Race: Allison and Bryant
Dr. Phil talks to a man who objects to his niece's interracial marriage.

Allison:
The very first time that my uncle met my [now] husband, it was very pleasant. He probably thought he was hired help. I had never been faced with that situation before of such prejudice.

Bryant: We got a wedding invitation from Allison with her and Bennie's picture in it. I sent the invitation back to her and told her that she would no longer be my niece if she went through with this marriage.

Allison: I was really kind of mad because he stated that he would not attend any family functions that we were at.

Bryant: She did call me a racist. It made me mad at the time because I'm not. Just because he's Mexican, it doesn't stop me from eating in a Mexican restaurant. I do have Mexican friends ... I'm not saying Bennie is not a good man. I just thought she could do better and stay within her own race.Bryant: I mean to keep everything pure. Why didn't he marry a Mexican or Spanish girl? Why did he have to marry
a white girl?

Dr. Phil: What is the problem you see? What are you afraid of with interracial marriages?

Bryant: You're eliminating two races and creating one ... I just don't believe in interracial marriage. I didn't believe it then, I don't believe it now, and when I leave this show, I still won't believe in it.

Dr. Phil: The fact that she didn't do what you wanted her to do, why is that so vile to you that you would cut her out of your life?

Bryant: It's like I said, if she's going to marry outside of her race and take her color somewhere else, then I'm not going to be a part of it. I still love her mother.
Dr. Phil: But you don't love Allison any more?

Bryant: Not really.

Dr. Phil: But you loved her before this?

Bryant: Oh, yes!

Dr. Phil: What you're saying is that Bennie, who is Mexican, is beneath you and has no right to be around you?

Bryant: No. That's not what I mean. I think everybody is equal. I don't think I'm any better than Bennie or that Bennie is any better than I am. I'm just not into this interracial marriage.
Bennie tells Dr. Phil that it's important that he and his wife reconcile with uncle Bryant because the situation always ends up making them the center of attention at family functions.

The situation has even affected Allison's mother Jeanette (who is Bryant's sister), because her attitude is that if her children aren't welcome, she isn't welcome.

Dr. Phil [to Bryant]:
Aren't you just playing semantics here when you say, 'I don't care what kind of man he is or how he treats her, the fact that he is a Mexican and is married to this woman makes me not want to be in the same room with them'? You're saying it's purely race. How is that not racist?

Bryant: I have no idea.

Dr. Phil: Is there a possibility that you're wrong?

Bryant: Sure, there's a possibility of everything. But I'll tell you one thing, there is no possibility of this reconciling.
Dr. Phil: I'm convinced that you're more interested in being right than being happy. What I hate is that you are missing out on relationships with people in your family. But you are the one who is choosing to divide it.

Bryant: Whose fault is it?

Dr. Phil: It's yours.

Bryant: It's not my fault.

Dr. Phil: The hell it isn't.

Bryant: The hell it isn't!

Dr. Phil: Who chose to withdraw themselves from the family?

Bryant: Who caused the withdrawal?

Dr. Phil: You did!

Bryant: No I didn't. I'm not the one who married out of my race.
Dr. Phil advises Allison: There are times in life when you have to give yourself what you wish you could get from someone else. You wish you could have love and support from your uncle. He has the ability to give it to you, but he chooses not to. If someone has animosity toward you, the only thing you can do is prepare an open heart, so that your door and heart are open should they ever change their mind. But peace at any price is no peace at all. You've got to be who you are, live and believe your convictions, and let [Bryant] own his, however misguided you may feel they are. You can't beat yourself up about it.

Dr. Phil advises Bennie: You feel guilty about being a divisive force in this family, but you cannot possibly own this problem. You can't feel guilt because this man chooses to ignore all of [your good qualities]. That is just irrational. You have to let him own that.