Monday Postcard #23 – The Looks We Get
I am very sorry for the delay of my Monday Postcard which I only get to write now. The past few days have been mental because of a personal issue. Unfortunately, I cannot share the details here but what I can say is that I am shocked that in 2018, some things that I thought are in the past are still happening.
I just wanted to keep you guys updated, I have not forgotten about sharing my thoughts for the new week with you. And after the whole experience I decided to dedicate this week’s post card to a topic which is, unfortunately, still very prevalent. And probably even more than I would have assumed – Racism.
When I came to Austria, I thought the following weeks will be relaxing and fun. Despite the first few days which were really awesome – I met my friends and family, got the latest updates and went to my favourite places, the past days were really hectic and I feel really exhausted and angry.
“The world of coloured people is different from yours.” I kept hearing this sentence and I never wanted to believe it. I – Austrian, white, privileged passport – ran around thinking the world is a happy and fair place and we have put all those things behind us. I have been dating a person of colour for some years now and apart of the looks we get on the streets (no, we do NOT make them up) it is the acts of racism that happen daily. Some are “small” – people moving away from us in the lift, some not so – not being served in a restaurant. And unfortunately, it does not really make a difference in which part of the world we are. Inter-racial couples obviously are “suspicious”.
I do not want to vent here – even though I really feel like it – but rather use this postcard to remind all of you: even though you yourself might not experience it on a daily basis, being put at a disadvantage or even being discriminated against because of your skin colour, culture, gender, sexual preferences etc. is a reality for a lot of people around you. Please take this postcard to remind yourself about what you can do to change it. Even if it is small contributions – standing up for your coworker or not accepting “jokes” discriminating others, for example.
When I was in primary school, my class participated in a drawing competition with the topic of fighting racism. I still remember our drawings – a community were it did not matter where you came from, which skin colour you have, which gender, etc. All the kids in our drawings were just happy. When I notice how normal it has become due to a change in the political climates across the world to use derogatory terms for certain groups, I am feeling that this drawing I made over 25 years ago is so far away. But, I do think that we can change it and I hope that our kids will be the happy kids in the drawings!
I will keep you posted and hopefully can share more soon! Have a good week!