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Michael_3165

#BlackLivesMatter

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So I am writing a column this week and the focus is of course on the only non-COVID story making the headlines... BlackLivesMatter. Following the horrific murder of George Floyd by a police officer, there has obviously been a clamour for answers and significant change in the way black people are treated around the world - particularly the US and UK.

I wanted to get your thoughts on the type of reforms that are needed in society to stem systemic racism. We have heard so many condemn racial assaults and deaths this week (rightly) but there has been little in the way of concrete recommendations or suggestions about what needs to be done practically. If we have a problem we must have solutions to the problem rather than simply highlighting it. Without clear goals and plans for how to get there it will likely not change. 

So any ideas on how we address the following would be good (not just from BAME individuals but also non-BAME)

- Higher rates of arrests of black males compared to white counterparts

- Lower levels of quality housing within the black community

- Much lower black representation in higher management positions

- Black people being in lower skilled, higher risk jobs (for example COVID related deaths due to being in lower-paid caring roles)

- Black males being around 3 times more likely to be admitted to a secure psychiatric unit under the Mental Health Act. 

 

All of these things are major issues. Sadly we have a few obstacles that also compound the problem that need addressing but I wonder how this can be implemented so any thoughts welcome...

- 52% of black people believed they were treated differently based on clothing, hairstyle, skin colour etc

- 43% of black people believed they were unfairly overlooked for a job 

- White people may not "see" a racism problem in the UK because they do not have experience of it - its the old adage that if you don't see it then it can't be true. No matter how much white people are told about the problem there may be a tendency to dismiss the problem entirely or minimise it as "not that bad"

- Non-verbal "cues" are often misinterpreted between races. For example, there is evidence that certain African backgrounds have a higher rate of people believing they are being "aggressive" when this is purely a part of how the culture communicates within and externally.

 

So yes any thoughts would be good. I am going for a non-academic piece that has more qualitative info about experience and suggestions on some of the difficulties... 

 

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I'm starting to think particularly in America that the whole police department needs abolishing. The way they have met the protests with unprovoked violence they absolutely are the biggest gang in america.

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Oops.

Edited by DEF

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So Bristol is historically built on money from slavery. A lot of it was built by Edward Colston who was both a philanthropist and a slave trader responsible for shipping 84,000 people, 19,000 of whom died in transit. We have a statue of him in the city centre:

Edward-Colston-statue-Bristol-1600x900.j

For years people have argued about whether it should be there. Every so often it gets "enhanced" with chains or an unofficial plaque.

Then today the debate became somewhat academic:
 

 

And then people kneeled on the statue for 8 minutes (photo credit Martin Booth, https://www.bristol247.com/news-and-features/news/live-coverage-black-lives-matter-march-in-bristol/)

protester-blm-colston-statue-martin-boot

 

And now the plinth is a public speaking platform:

speech-colston-statue-martin-booth.jpg

 

This prompted a quick debate about whether the statue should be put in a museum as part of a slavery exhibition, a debate that has also since become academic:
 

EZ60MH0WAAAR7b-?format=jpg&name=large

Edited by JNLister

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2 hours ago, Michael_3165 said:

 

So I am writing a column this week

 

Who for? Just so I know to avoid it. 

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42 minutes ago, Teedy Kay said:

US policings Use of Force needs to be completely overhauled.

Just the US?

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Just saw someone say in regards to the statue: "Well, I guess we should destroy all books that mention slavery then!!!!"

Well no, as it's pretty easy to avoid books and it would be a conscious decision to pick one up and read it. Can't be very nice for Black people to have to walk past a statue like that every day.

Pull them all down. 

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11 minutes ago, SuperBacon said:

Just saw someone say in regards to the statue: "Well, I guess we should destroy all books that mention slavery then!!!!"

Well no, as it's pretty easy to avoid books and it would be a conscious decision to pick one up and read it. Can't be very nice for Black people to have to walk past a statue like that every day.

Pull them all down. 

Not to mention that most books with slavery in them tend to give you information about slavery, while the statue misinforms about slavery by glorifying Colston's contributions that came from the slave trade. Like Benoit, his contributions are not separable from what made him problematic. 

So that argument can cunt off. 

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1 hour ago, Keith Houchen said:

God I hope the Churchill one is next. 

Good idea. Replace it with one of Mick Coop or Colin Stein perhaps?

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