Thoughts #1 — Growing Human and if the World moved to Africa.
So boom, a quick intro. This is a series cataloguing my most interesting thoughts that take place over the day, week, month, whatever time frame. Like everyone else I go through the day and spot generally cool shit. I don’t tweet about this stuff however because of the limited character length and don’t write about them because I’ll be typing up lengthy essays on the daily. Ideally this will strike a medium (lél) between the two — where I can skate around interesting thoughts without going into extreme depth or research. Essentially just let my mind flows where it wants to go and regurgitate the info onto a page later. Most of these thoughts may be half baked and throw up a lot of questions — not sure why I’ve dropped two vomiting metaphors there. But in summary, I’m (trying to be) content with throwing things out there. Not overanalysing every small thing, particularly in regards to writing. Authenticity — and to some degree vulnerability, are paramount here so yeah…
On with it.
1. Kid learning about human interactions (Morning commute)
I saw a kid (no older than 3) going through an ABC book with his grandma on the tube this morning. What caught my attention was when he started to kick my bag and I smiled, but moved it away because… no. His face lit up here and I can tell he didn’t expect me to react to his action in any way. I wasn’t on his radar at the time as he was focused on my bag, suddenly though, his random action caused my direct reaction.
A couple stops later he casually threw a book on the floor and marvelled when a stranger picked it up and handed it back — clapping his hands, giggling, it was adorable. Of course following this he then instantly threw another book and another stranger picked it up — same reaction of surprise and unbridled joy (his gran confiscated the books at this point.)
I think it was at this moment this kid learnt something about human interaction. That he could cause people outside of his family unit to respond to his idle actions. Like a butterfly effect. We are social animals. In those moments, he went from having no power & no influence, to all the power and complete influence — if only for a moment.
It made me wonder when the first time I learnt about socialisation was.
2. Yellow Jackets (Lunch time)
I saw some builders cross the street earlier — they were perfectly lined up in a row of 5, and I thought they looked like a boyband. I started wondering about what they would be called and the term -Yellow Jackets jumped at me. I remembered Yellow Jacket was also a villain in Ant Man so this had to go because of copyright reasons — don’t ask why I’m imagining litigation battles. Anyway I decided they would be called ‘The Yellow Jackets’ TYJ for short. I was impressed at how sexy the initials TYJ sounded. Like the name TYJ conjures up thoughts of a genuinely good looking/cool individual. I walked back to work muttering ‘TYJ’ in different accents and dialects for no reason. Big up TYJ.
3. African Immigration (Walk home)
I’ve been trying to think of when the next big social clash would occur due to mass immigration. Looking at things like the current anti-Islamic movement, anti-Black immigration within Britain during the 50s on, anti-Irish in America, anti-Chinese waves in Australia, ‘Ghana must Go’ in Nigeria — I can go on and on. But the point is, they appear to sprout suddenly (and often violently) from nowhere but in hindsight the signs seem pretty obvious. So I began wondering where the next ‘Anti-x’ wave would come from; then it hit me, home. Not the house I was currently walking towards, but home-home, Africa. (Ghana if you want to be specific but I have an issue with state allegiances, particularly when they were arbitrarily created from the colonial era — but I cba to get into that today…)
Currently South Africa is already boiling with violent anti-immigration sentiments towards migrants from across the continent. Migrants are blamed for things like high crime rates and job shortages (sound familiar?). But I began to wonder, in ‘x’ years when Africa becomes one of the most prosperous places on the planet — how would mass immigration from White, Asian, South American or even Black Caribbean’s be received? History shows us, not well. This worries me. Getting to this stage of liberalisation in the West has taken decades. Things like breaking down gender roles, equal pay, same sex marriage, marijuana decriminalisation, euthanasia — a lot of these things are barely widespread in the West let alone much of Africa. How many years would it take to reach a similarly tolerant stage? What sort of tensions could arise?
Hell, almost all African’s in my mum and grandma’s generation are extremely conservative and very traditional. My hooped earing and long dreadlocks would attract a lot of negative attention back home. Being known for open-mindedness is not something their generation is largely known and this does concern me greatly.
Globalisation ensures we all move closer and closer together — digitally and physically. Hundreds if not thousands of years down the line I seriously doubt you will find a single human that isn’t mixed race in someway. As a species we move around consistently — either through force (slavery, war) or choice (economic migration, wanderlust). It seems almost unnatural for an area to remain homogenous to one ethnic group. I wonder how future immigration movements from the world back home will be received. I wonder how smooth the process of liberalisation will be?
Assuming liberalisation is even the natural order of things, but that I guess, is a thought for another time.