Unfortunately being Black is accompanied by so many challenges, discomforts, weird tales and so on. It’s like a bad omen for some people. If you are Black and living in a “White mans” land then you can relate and know what I am talking about . I am a Black Kenyan girl living in Austria Europe.
I just call a spade a spade and not otherwise. That is why I embrace being Black. I don’t get offended when you refer to me as Black . I actually did not realize that I would one day be discussing My being born black. I even did not know I was “black” till I took the plane to Austria.
It’s so obvious that our skin colour is the first thing the other person sees when they look at you. What they see first is your skin colour before they can go ahead and differentiate you with your different characteristics.
There is this cliché that I feel uncomfortable with ” I don’t see your skin colour, I just see a human being .” Of Course we are all human beings and for someone to say that, they have seen your skin colour first and they are kinda trying to make you not feel bad about it. They battle not to mention your blackness on your face.
Is being black a bad thing? Some people think that being black comes with loads of problems or that its very unfortunate. They feel like they have to give you some “special treatment ” so you don’t snap and call them racist. How inferior are Blacks compared to the White people?
My Racism experiences started when I first stepped my feet at the Vienna International Airport two years ago. I travelled with a friend from Kenya and I suppose we were the only black people on the plane. A policeman checked our passports and we were told to follow him.
The police questioned us and since there was nothing wrong with our visas they let us go, but definitely not before they wore gloves and checked our bags and with two big fat dogs sniffing everything around us. At that time we were afraid that something was really wrong with us.
We were afraid of being deported back home. We did not understand and we probably thought it was Airport Protocol only that it was me and my friend been checked.
They did not find anything on us. Later when I got to have contact and interact with people is when I came to know that the police conduct random racial control… My personal story will be in another blog coming soon.
There was one time a white middle-aged woman almost bumped into me coz she wasn’t watching where she was going and the only kind thing to do is excuse yourself. She looked at me and was like “am sorry” and I said the same thing but in German.
She sat down and started apologizing that it was out of reflex that she spoke to me in English. She said, “…you know when I was working in London and I met, mmmh people who were not white, I spoke English to them…” That is the lamest thing I have ever heard. Was she trying to console me and not mention black people in my presence? That even offended me more. What language do people in London speak for heaven’s sake.
Another occasion that reminded me how black I was is what am about to narrate. I will not write down all the small details due to some obvious reasons. I went to pick up a kid that I love so much from school. Mind you he was 3 years old.
He starts his tantrums and argues that he just wants to be picked up by his dad. I tell him daddy is working and I’m the one to take him home. What he tells me next shocks me. And I quote, “…I don’t want Black! ” I ask him, “what is black?” He says ” that what is on your face..”
I was very astonished and tried explaining to him that I love him very much and regardless of our skin colour we are all Human. He snapped and said, “…no you are not a human being, You are a chimpanzee! . By then my adrenaline was boiling and I couldn’t take it anymore. It was out of my control…
This goes far to prove that kids learn very fast in their daily life from things they hear, see, read and are taught. How could a 3 yr old have such a strong weapon to fight me? It didn’t hurt that he called me black coz that is what I am, but it hurt that such a young kid could compare a black person to a chimpanzee which is historical whereby ‘Blacks’ were and still are compared to Monkeys.
To make it worse this kid was sometimes being told by his dad that am not black ,am chocolate but no one is allowed to bite me! Is that right people? Maybe it is humorous but I don’t think it’s something to tell kids.
Some other day I was walking at the park and a group of white guys were just calling me chocolate out loud, at the same time laughing. I ain’t chocolate and if I were I would have melted way long before I came abroad under the very hot sun of “Africa.”
I am happy just the way I am, black! Yes I agree there are very many skin tones. Some lighter, some darker and so on but do not refer to me as chocolate that you can eat or whatever.
If you have experienced any kind of racism please share your story. I will be glad to read your story.