We may not always think about it, but parents are the most influential figures in a child’s life. And whatever we do, think, they will reproduce one day – the good, but also the bad… Colored people around the world have been the target of violence and mistreatment for hundreds of years. Look at your own local community, and you will observe racist tirades all around you. The difference today is that everyone holds the world in their hands, thanks to social media. And today, we can’t ignore the facts; we need to look at ourselves, our flawed behaviors, and change them. For the sake of our children.
TIME TO GET OUR OF OUR BUBBLES
Nowadays, society has extremely high expectations of educators. Not only do we expect them to teach our children the academic skills necessary for them to attend university and land themselves a proper professional life, but we also expect them to teach our children social skills, sexual education, how to deal with difficulties of life and how to treat others. Children learn from watching their parents on a daily basis: how do you deal with responsibilities in front of your children, how do you treat other people in front of them, do you teach them kindness and respect ?
As soon as we use our power or position to abuse and mistreat others, we become bullies. And racism is a form of bullying. Some of us are socially responsible, very liberal and open-minded, and yet, are hostile towards different communities. There can be no ambivalence about racism: we, adults, are the ones who create the barriers and culture of disrespect. It is time that we review our attitudes and behaviors, and realize what we are teaching our children. It is time for us to step up and take responsibility for teaching children right from wrong, and how to get along with the rest of the world.
RACIAL BIAS STARTS AT HOME
Racial bias is a concept that children learn at home. And whatever lesson or behavior schools or teacher will try to implement, if a kid goes home to hear his parents make racial or prejudiced comments, he will be confused, and will end up following the behavior modeled by his parents. It is our duty, as parents, to teach our kids that making people feel bad, or differentiate them based on the color of their skin, their religion, their intellectual abilities or the country they come from is wrong. It is our job to teach them the skills for how to navigate in this world, to make sure they do not become bullies to others, or are silently bullied by others. The moment we lead our children to believe that they count more than others because of their social position, we are planting the seeds of racism. We are telling them that some people are not entitled to the same rights or chances, hence validating future racist behavior.