Re: “My Black vote matters equally whether I cast it in my white lab coat or in a hoody” [Oct. 31, Opinion]:

One sentence in particular grabbed me: “Later today, when I cast my vote, I will not be wearing my white lab coat but rather a hooded sweatshirt. The difference in how I am treated in a hooded sweatshirt compared to my white lab coat is a necessary reminder of why this vote matters.”

How did our society get to the point where a Black man in a hoodie is automatically considered a threat? As a middle-aged, white woman, I have had the privilege of being respected whether I dress for work or for comfort. Why is that same common courtesy and respect not given just as readily to people of color?

Our society needs to address the systemic racism prevalent in so many aspects of our society, and in the hearts and minds of so many people. Please get out and vote like your life depends on it, because it does.

Karen Ainley, Seattle