We need to talk

I have been wanting to write a blog post about this for ages, but I haven’t known how to go about it or how to frame it. More and more things have happened that have strengthened my urge to speak about this; first for the past 6/7 months I have carried out research, and have done a lot of  personal reflection, on race and racial identity at university. Further, recently I was blessed by Chloe (her insta and blog are linked here), with the opportunity to discuss how I feel being a mixed race person in this day and age! And now, things are happening in the world, that have really hit home, and I have something to say.

This blog post is about race and it is for everyone to read. In no way do I mean to offend anybody, and if it offends you, or if you want to talk, then please don’t hesitate to message me and we can discuss (no arguments, just respectable conversations welcome)! I do not disregard the experiences of anybody – but today this blog post is solely about the lives of Black people; and it is written for all people to read.

We all know what is going on in the world at the moment, in the last 3 weeks alone, we have witnessed a series of great injustices- where American law enforcement once again have shown themselves to be the danger- especially to the lives of Black people. I said in a recent instagram story that it is upsetting- not because it is a new thing (it is far from that) but because I’m no longer shocked when I hear of stories where black people are treated unjustly by society (everywhere- not just in the US). I also wrote ‘the idea that this has become a normality is truly unfathomable and upsetting’ I am going to correct myself, and say that the idea that this IS and always has been a norm is unfathomable and incredibly upsetting. How many deaths is it going to take, for society to wake up and realise that things need to be done, to protect the lives and livelihoods of People Of Colour (POC)?!

This is not a problem just for black people, it is a problem for everyone to tackle. It is not a quick instagram challenge either- it is common for events such as the recent one’s to occur, gain a lot of media and social media attention. We then see an influx, a flooding of moving photos, quotes and images on social media- only to watch it slowly die down. I urge you to CONTINUE posting support, doing reading, self-education and having raw conversations about things like this after a week passes. Don’t let it die down. Even though I am writing from the UK, and a lot of my readers are from the UK, we all- as a global community, have a part to play in the tearing down of racial injustices on small local levels, all the way to the greater systematic levels. 

Young black children are being raised to know how to talk to the police, how to look at the police, what to do when they are pulled over (note I said when not if because in the US black drivers are 20% more likely to be pulled over than white drivers). It is devastating to know that parents must teach their young children about those things in order to protect themselves from a force that should be protecting them. It is even more devastating that, as we have gathered from countless recent and past events, a black person could be doing all of those things and still end up dying at the hands of the police- do you understand how scary that must be? To have so little privilege that even if you are doing the right thing you may die- so you pull out your phone and record. AND EVEN IF IT IS RECORDED, you could still die. There will still be injustice after your death, in regards to who is charged and how they are charged (that is – if they are even charged). The UK isn’t innocent either. We don’t have guns, but the inequality is rife, lives are still lost and systematic racism is everywhere and we as POC are so hugely underrepresented in every manner that there is even such thing as a 13% attainment gap at university.

I’m not trying to hold a competition as to where has the worst cases, I want to open everyone’s eyes to the progressive façade society has put on but is failing to uphold. I ask you to think about where the progression is, in a world where people are not going to the police for help because they don’t want to risk their lives, and where people are not talking about the HUGE elephant in the room that needs discussing.

I saw something yesterday that said BlackLivesMatter is not, and should not be just about the deaths, it is also about the lives of black people and that couldn’t be more true- the raising to equality in jobs, schools, universities, opportunities. We must all do what we can where we can, even if that is just something small- because everyone, every single person no matter the colour of their skin can help play a role in tearing down this systematic injustice.

The BlackLivesMatter movement is for everyone, it is against no one- if you assume that when I say Black lives matter that I mean nobody else’s does then perhaps you should read this post again to understand why it MUST be said and fought for. I keep seeing the example, take a look

IMG_2349

Of course every life matters, but unfortunately black lives are incredibly threatened right now.

It is not, and should not be black people versus white people. IT SHOULD BE EVERYONE AGAINST RACISM (racist people, structures, systems and groups- the whole lot).

One thing I learnt whilst doing my dissertation, is that a lot of people actually want to talk about race. So instead of it being the elephant in the room, allow yourself to talk about what is going on, teach your kids how to not be racist, talk to friends and family about what’s happening, about race around the world- it doesn’t matter what colour you are, we are all responsible for the tackling of what is going on in the world and the first step is talking about what can be done. Talk to your black friends, ask what you can do, read up on it- there’s a countless number of useful websites (BlackLivesMatter.com is always a good place to start). There is a tonne of movies and series on all platforms:

Netflix- When they see us | Now TV- The Hate U Give | Amazon Prime- Fruitvale station

Check out this resource listing 10 documentaries to watch about race! https://www.docplay.com/articles/10-documentaries-to-watch-about-race-instead-of-asking-a-person-of-colour-to-explain-things-for-you/

there are books, there are podcasts, there are social media pages and YouTube videos, all of which expose the things that are going on that aren’t spoken about everyday. The internet is a blessing, because you can learn all of this from the comfort of your home.

Everyone should be angry– it shouldn’t matter the colour of your skin, it shouldn’t matter where you live, we can all play a part in spreading awareness, opening peoples eyes to the realities of race around the world.

As a people, we on planet earth need to FIX UP. We need to help others to see and understand what is going on. We need to figure out a way- as a global society- to overthrow the stupid racist systems that are in place all over the world because FUCK THE SYSTEMS THAT ARE IN PLACE RIGHT NOW.

Now is the time for everyone to come together ❤️

Thank you for reading

Maya x

2 Comments

  1. Well said Maya – thank you for putting this out there and helping us to reflect on our own actions, inactions and helping us to plan to take more action.
    Hope you are well
    lots of love
    Louize Petch

    Liked by 1 person

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