How to Value Black Lives
Aspen Institute
458

I am a black, mother of four young beautiful children, growing up in an outskirt of a middle-sized city in Germany. I came here WILLINGLY 18yrs ago because I fell in love with a lovely, young German man, whom I met in Switzerland. So I understand and resonate VERY well with your views

Leading up to when I met my hubby, I had always approached every living being with respect not because I felt they were superior but because having grown up with christian values, it was the norm for me.

My experiences in almost 2 decades in a western country shows me that, while most young white citizens are generally nonchalant about the treatment of non-whites, not because they are racists BUT because they cannot feel what we feel, because they have NEVER been DIFFERENT.

The question is how do we sensitize OTHERS to appreciate HOW and WHAT we feel? I honestly believe WE as blacks MUST recognize our own STRENGTHS and then PRESS on to make the rest of the world SEE and KNOW what we already know since the onset of life- that is, WE are NOT different. As a Microbiologist, with a first degree at the age of 21, can say that All humans have the same anatomical features and intelligence depending on your exposure.

The colour of our skin should NOT determine WHAT and HOW we are seen but WHAT one has in his head. As a chíld growing up in the aftermath of colonialism in Africa, was taught that the only way out of poverty and social inequality was EDUCATION and so it became a RELIGION for me. That was over thirty years ago and the world has not changed for me; we are still facing social injustice every day.

Education has only enlightened and enlivened me and my immediate environment but has DONE nothing more. You still find yourself fighting the same battles our UN-EDUCATED fore-fathers fought some 200 years ago i.e partial segregation on the home front and the outside world. You dont get the same chances or privileges a white-skinned citizen gets, when given the same opportunities.

Social injustice is the breeding ground for would-be terrorists and it doesn’t seem like our society has learned any lesson from human history. I am personally tired of incessant rantings about how we black should value our lives and what have we. I have ALWAYS valued my existence as a human being first because honestly I dont have a black skin when one knows what BLACK really look likes and the OTHERS dont have a WHITE skin either judging from what white really is. It is time we MOVE on and FREE ourselves from politics of COLOUR and embrace our individual rights to be on this earth without apologising to God knows whom……