‘A passenger has been taken ill on the train’

“The xxx line has major delays due to a passenger being taken ill on a train”

And as the tannoy shouts this announcement the entire platform unite in a chorus of sighs. How annoying! Such a nuisance! We shake our heads, our plans destroyed, our days ruined. I too found myself growing impatient.

Someone asks when train would start working. We find out a man has stopped breathing and an ambulance team were trying to resuscitate him. It’s only then did I snap out of it.

Wow.

How did I get so self-absorbed? Perhaps we will be late for work, late to meet our friends, wait a little longer to go shopping. But is that equal to someone being physically ill?

The capitalistic nature of the world engulfs us, and we forget our humanity. And in this small example I realise how easy it is for humans to become animals – described as cockroaches or swarms, for people in need to become enemies out to destroy our own resources, and the innocent become suspects.

“If you’re not careful, the newspapers will have you hating the people who are being oppressed, and loving the people who are doing the oppressing.” – Malcolm X

Dear white people

These are the things I want to say to the white left. To the white right – I can’t even deal. 

Racism is not classism. I will not elaborate on that here today because I have so many little things I want to start with. The basics (…for basic people…) – let’s go:

Why is it offensive to call you white? Are you not white? We need to tick the same boxes you tick ‘white, black, asian, arab’ (and what is up with those categories – ethnicities, races, geographical places all mixed into one – why haven’t they fixed it yet?). How am I meant to call you out of your racism, or on institutional racism if I can’t even name my oppressor?

Black people and brown people are called such every day. And yes we are lowered when we are called such. And yes yes many brown and black people get offended when they are called these terms because of that but you are not. And yes yes yes I acknowledge the viewpoint that we are all human and we should stop using these terms. But we are not living in a post-racial world yet (if you believe you are, you’re wrong). Stop getting offended and start listening to what I am saying before or after I say ‘white people’.

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