“Why am I not white?”
This was the question from last week. It was surprising for me, at least, because having lived all alone by ourselves with our own philosophies, Dhruv and I frequently discussed how the colour of the skin doesn’t matter, it is a person’s qualities that matter most. I thought living in a diverse and multi-cultural apartment complex in South India for 3 years was helpful to understand this point and I believed it did.
Then how come the question of not being white reared its head?
This wasn’t a one-off instance. Every day, he spent his time figuring out if his body parts were getting any whiter. The word ‘No’ for an answer did not provide any solace. Hence, it became pertinent for us to address the issue of skin colour once again citing difference in geographical condition from where people come from, the work of sunny latitudes and genetic adaptation over thousands of years. I am sure the concept of genetic adaptation is tough to understand at his age. There will be some revisiting on this in sometime and I shall be happy to do my research.
For all the discussions and explanations, it will be interesting to see how long the question of skin colour is here to stay. Meanwhile, the task we have undertaken for us, for now, (when the school reopens after summer vacation) is to see Flabius, David and Yasin as they are. They are his classmates and they shared his table in year 2. The task is to look for whether they are kind, considerate, helpful, sensitive to others, aggressive, loud, mischievous, insensitive, stay active or keep quiet. With so much to consider about them, where is the mental space to see who is black, brown and white among them?
For this week, we shall be reading Anne Frank, therefore, more thoughtful discussions are likely to follow.
I have to thank you all for the thoughts you shared with me on my last week’s Monday Musings post. The case of filtered images was debated the most and I was delighted to see healthy disagreements and diversity in viewpoints. We are a wonderful blogging community with each one of us having our own authentic and non-judgmental voice and I cherish to be a part of such a community.