The Big White Lie
In America and Canada, We Are Flat Out Lied To, On A Regular Basis
“Do you want to live in Africa? In the wilds where everyone is hungry and starved? No? Eat your broccoli.”
American and Canadian children hear a variation of this lie, every day in their childhoods. Dirty room? “Do you want to live in Africa?” “Don’t you think they appreciate what they have?”
Oh yeah, it’s the big white lie.
When I was in school we learned about Residential Schools, in that we learned they existed. The Catholic school system was very clear about the fact that these places existed, but they made them sound like adventurous wonderous places to be.
They didn’t tell us about the sexual abuse, the rape, the kidnappings, and the trauma, that took place inside these schools. They didn’t tell us about baby switching, or white people adopting Indigenous babies, they didn’t tell us about any of this shit. I had to be 35 years old before I learned what it means to be descended from someone who lived there.
And I learned firsthand because I saw what the result of those schools was. Poverty for far too many Indigenous people who were either taken to those schools or were a generation or two removed from them.
When it comes to what we learn about Palestine, Yemen, and Iraq, we were taught flat-out that this is where terrorists live. Everyone even the children are fucking terrorists they all hate white people, and they all want us dead.
I learned this from soldiers, and truly, truly uninformed children of soldiers who thought they understood war but were just as clueless about it as I was. Until their parents didn’t come home. Then we understood war in ways that only those who sat waiting for soldiers to come home could.
When soldiers didn’t come home to Canada, it was because they re-upped their tour, OR because..there was nothing left of them to bring home. When they did come home, many walked out the door a few days later, unable to handle the life they’d left behind, any longer.
See, when I was a kid, Soldiers would come to our school because the army base wasn’t too far away from where most of us lived, worked, and went to school. So we saw them quite often. They told us they were “Peace Keepers,” and Peace Keepers don’t go to war zones to fight, they go to keep the peace. That’s a fucking lie. They carry guns too.
Turns out that everything we’re taught as children is completely fucking inaccurate. We’ve been conditioned and brainwashed our entire lives, and it’s only when you start pulling back the layers of racism, and the roots of colonization, that you start to understand how long this “let’s lie to the kids because they’ll never figure it out,” bullshit has been going on.
I think I’ve been realizing it for a while, but the other week I was speaking with Savannah Worley and Nada Chehade and it hit me: Westerners are fucking idiots.
Like we have absolutely zero clue about how the world works. Did you know white people go to predominantly filled with Brown people countries, just to have sex?
Not just pedophiles do this, although that’s a whole other disgusting issue. But grown men and women, looking for other grown other folks, and they have reality shows about this shit as if it’s cute and romantic. It’s disturbing. At least.
Westerners are the worst for not knowing how the world works, and it’s easy to say “well it’s not our fault,” but the truth is that in 2023, we really need to work harder to understand how different cultures work around the world. And not just historically but now.
Why was there a revolution in Cuba? Why did people protest the vote in Brazil? Why are Latino folks not fond of Black folks? Why is Brown colored folks fighting each other? We need to know the answers to these questions, and yeah white people I’m talking to you.
Arturo Dominguez and Johnny Silvercloud are really good places to start when it comes to understanding how white colonization has created a cataclysm of inter-racial racism.
It’s important to understand these things because when we’re talking about issues like voting rights, we need to know the history of the Black vote, and why it’s so important that the right to vote isn’t removed from people based on color, race, creed, nationality, size, or orientation.
You think or you believe — if you’re a white supremacist — that I’m making this up, but then I point you to Florida where trans kids aren’t allowed to play sports, or Texas where women are denied safe access to a healthy abortion that might save their lives.
It’s not hard to believe that they are coming for the Black vote when they are literally making it more difficult for Black and Brown-led communities to vote.
When we’re talking about freedom for all, the phrase “freedom for all or freedom for none, for one without the other is pointless,” comes to mind. I don’t know who said that, but nothing wiser has ever been said.
The moment that we stop working to support a world where we can ALL be free, is the moment we are no longer fighting for freedom, we’re fighting for our tiny piece of power, and that’s just not the world I want to live in.
Sending all my love,
Devon J Hall
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