Everyone listen in, I’m going to tell you the truth that you don’t want to hear:
You’re a racist.
What? How dare you? I am most certainly not!
So now you’re denying it (smirk).
Don’t you know about subtle racism? Everyday racism? You can be racist and not even know it. That is one of the worst kinds of racism. The next worst thing is committing subtle racism, and then proceeding to deny that you were being racist.
Now that the we’ve cleared the air, you can begin to accept responsibility for the personal role you have played in perpetuating racism in its various forms. It is important nay, crucial that we identify racism when we see it and draw attention to it. Prevention is better than cure. If we can change the culture of racism, then we can prevent racism from happening.
Not only is it hateful and ignorant, but racism is deadly. It causes heart disease. Unborn babies suffer from it, and it can even force them to prematurely leave the womb. That’s not to mention its victims that are filling up our mental health facilities, the poor dears.
But do not despair; not all is lost. There is something you can do. A team of dedicated campaigners from anti-racist charity ‘All Together Now‘ have created an app for your mobile device.
“The app focuses on subtle racism – an indirect or understated form of discrimination that researchers found to be prevalent in Australia. It invites players to put themselves in the shoes of an Aboriginal man, a Muslim woman or an Indian student, or to be themselves, as they negotiate a range of scenarios in which subtle racism is at play.”
The game is made up of a series of humiliations that occur at a rate of four per day, every day for seven days. While some of these might prompt a bout of cold hearted laughter from the cruel and merciless, for anyone with an ounce of conscience and concern for others, it is vital to take these concerns seriously. I downloaded the app, and mentally prepared myself. (The trigger warnings were a life-saver!). In my first day in the life of Patrick, an Aboriginal man with a coiffed side-parting and beige linen shirt, I suffered virtual humiliation at the following racism-laced email:
Now while ‘Abo-Fridays’ are yet to catch-on as a nation-wide phenomenon, you can bet that it could go viral in a matter of seconds, prompting co-workers to request rain-dances, walkabouts and war-paint to spice up the end of the week and start the weekend with a bang. This kind of thing is unacceptable, and raising awareness and calling out racism is everyone’s responsibility, even if it prevents just one set of clapping sticks from precipitously colliding and creating a racist beat.