Talk is still rife around the attack on George Floyd who died on May 25th when a white police officer pressed a knee into his neck. It was one of the latest of many deaths of black men and woman at the hand of police in America. (Reference: https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2020/05/31/george-floyd-protests-live-updates/).
Protests have also erupted in that country sparking the much needed conversation around racism. It is the largest battle in the world. On a daily basis racism takes the freedom and security away from black people which has been given by a democracy. In a country like America it is astonishing that in the year 2020 we are still witnessing blatant attack’s in this manner. It brings about the conversation of what to do with people who are racist.
We also acknowledge that as much as we grieve with our black brothers and sisters in this time when being the “wrong” skin colour results in life threatening situations we also see how Mexican, Muslim and other minority’s groups experience daily discrimination based on their differences.
If we bring the topic back home we also can shed light on the number of racist attacks in our country by authorities. During the dreadful apartheid era scores of freedom fighters were subjected to police brutality based on their skin colour. This has also infiltrated to our society in which we see people taking to platforms to hurl racist insults when a person of colour cuts them off in traffic. It is also visible when people take to these public platforms to voice their anger at the state of the country and use hateful words based on the persons skin colour. (Reference: https://www.news24.com/news24/southafrica/news/sahrc-investigating-social-media-posts-of-dlamini-zuma-being-depicted-as-an-ape-20200530).
The ongoing anguish of dealing with racist people is a battle that every person of colour faces. It is almost the only battle that showcases how someone can pretend to be a splendid delight to your face, but behind your back with their own company refer to you as something derogatory based on your race. In a time when the world is battling the Covid-19 virus it is devastating that we have to see how people of power misuse their authority. It is as if human life means so little that based on the suspicion of an activity on someone’s skin colour we presume they are a hazard to society.
This thinking needs to end. We should not go on living in a bubble assuming the way we live life is the only thing that matters. Our black brothers and sisters are dying at the hands of people who think a darker skin tone is a red light for crime and society menacing. If we don’t change our mindsets more and more people will be victims to this ongoing battle that is a bigger threat than any virus. If this continues our black brothers and sisters will have to quarantine for their safety.
Devan Moonsamy is the author of the Book Racism, Classism, Sexism and all the Other ISM’s that Divide Us. He is also the CEO of ICHAF Training Institute. ICHAF offers SETA-approved training in business skills, computer use, and soft skills. Devan specialises in conflict and diversity management, and regularly conducts seminars on these issues for corporates. To book a seminar with Devan or for other training courses, please use the contact details below.