Well here I am at it again, writing and thinking, again. With everything currently going on in the world racism is at the front of my mind, again. Wouldn’t you love not to think about it? Wouldn’t it be nice to live in a world without any form of discrimination? I’ve been thinking a lot about my childhood recently, I was raised as a Jehovah’s Witness for a time and during that time I didn’t think about skin colour or ethnicity I called all other children brother and sister, even if we were not actually related and all adults other than my parents were called uncle and auntie and skin colour didn’t matter to anyone all that mattered was the word of God, oh ignorance truly is and was bliss.
At primary school there wasn’t many children of colour but again it didn’t matter they were just kids the same as me, but when I got to secondary school I learned about racism for the first time, it was a real shock and horrible to witness I heard a white girl call a Sikh girl a dirty “paki” tuns out the white girl was wrong as the girl she’d just insulted was from actually India not Pakistan, I can’t remember either of the girls names but I remember asking a teacher what the word meant because the Sikh girl was in tears because of one word and I was horrified, he went on to explain racism to me in a little more detail and I was even more horrified. This teacher was a Religious Education teacher and the next lesson I had with him was probably one of the most memorable, but it was also the on of the only ones sadly, that were about racism and how bad it was and I took a real interest because I’d gone from a world filled with love where everyone was equal regardless of skin colour, race or creed into a world where hate and negativity were rife pretty much overnight.
Looking back on my school days I would have loved classes in equality and diversity as a core subject from the beginning, we did have a few classes in secondary school on the subject but not nearly enough and they didn’t make much of an impact on many of my fellow pupils to be honest, I’ve faced discrimination myself for having a disability and at school was labelled a “Lesbo” for not having an interest in boys and never getting changed with the other girls during PE, but in fact I was covered in needle marks from medication I needed and was embarrassed about it and I did have a secret crush on one boy but my prude upbringing meant it wasn’t something I was openly comfortable talking about with others. I had seen other pupils subjected to all kinds of discrimination during my time at secondary school and as much as I loved school I also hated it, most of the discrimination I witnessed was racism and we only really had classes on the subject of racism and discrimination when there was an incident at the school or in the media.
We never really learnt about slavery at school either, except that the workforce that built the pyramid’s for the Pharaoh's in Egypt where slaves and the Romans had slaves and some of them were forced to fight as gladiators, but I remember going to The British Museum in London with a family friend when I was 10 years old and seeing an exhibit of 1700/1800’s slaver ship with mannequins depicting slaves all chained up cramped together in the hull with a