Saturday, March 21, 2015

Racism: Bred Not Born

One day, I was subbing with a class of 4-yo's, and it came time to tell them a story. They'd heard it before, so their interest level wasn't really high enough to keep them entirely silent, and by the end of the book, they'd all taken to pointing at the characters and saying which one "they were." That same thing that we all have done with shows, books, magazines, and anything else where we see someone, and we're living in a perpetual state of make believe and pretending things. (My gosh, I miss that state! Well, I guess I'm still in it, I just miss everyone my age also being in it. Hehe)

There were a variety of skin colors and ages featured in the story, and I'm ashamed to say, I was incredibly surprised when the majority of them were pointing at the African father, mother, daughter and baby, saying, "I'm this one!"

Now, I must be clear about something... My shame in making this statement isn't coming from a source of "My gosh, I can't believe they actually want to be the black person," but from a source of the slight stereotype I've developed in regards to Spanish people over the collective three years I've lived here.They can tend to be quite racist against blacks, Chinese, and Arabs. Not in all parts of Spain, of course Barcelona and Madrid are big cities and people are a bit more accustomed to seeing a variety of skin colors around them, but even in Sevilla, a large city, glares were thrown around freely when a colored person or someone of a different religion was spotted. Which is really strange, because Spanish people aren't the lightest skinned people in the world. But, I begin to digress, and I don't want make you guys think Spanish people are nasty racists, because they're also lovely. ;-)

So, this being what I've picked up on over the years I've been living here, I was really surprised to see the little kids wanting to be the darkest colored characters. This could potentially be explained through this sad-but-true video/study,

and definitely confirmed for me that racism is bred, not born.

It was really great to see these kids choosing to be the characters that most-resembled them, and gave me such hope for the future! Now we just have to work on not breeding it within our children and the future generations. If we encourage love and acceptance, and set a good example of how not to judge someone based on how they look, then the change we'll see in the world will be so beautiful and big! We can do it! We are!

Love you fellow Earthlings! Happy first day of Spring! 

Blessings, Love, Light & Wonder
-Allison <3

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