Racism seems to be a hot topic at the moment, its seems no matter where I turn on the internet that its high on the agenda – from reading in the news about race related violence to mutters of “Asian drivers” that you hear so often.
I just read an article on stuff.co.nz regarding a group trying to actively recruit new members for its white supremesists group. The are promoting the cause “White pride worldwide”. Perhaps I am unusual in that I do not take pride in the colour of my skin. I am proud to be a New Zealander, proud to be good at my job, proud to be a good human – the colour of my skin is not something I would consider I should be proud of.
They want to “Stop The Asian Invasion“. Perhaps their local Maori community might like to remind them that as they presumably are white, that they are also immigrants to this country. Just because they have been here a little longer than recent Asian (and other immigrants), they are not the native people of this country.
White is not a race, if you ask a white person what their background is, they will usually give you a bunch of different places and or cultures – white people do not come from “Whiteland”. I’d like to know how white do you have to be to join their group? What if you are an Eastern European, with an accent, could you join? What if you are Maori, as an original inhabitant of this land, and want to join? What if you are a decendant of a Chinese goldminer in the 1860s?
The US is saying that by 2043, “whites” will be a minority – again, since when is “white” a race? That lumps a whole bunch of people together purely by the colour of their skin. I’m sure those of the numerous African and Asian countries living the in the US will be thrilled that when lumped together they are no longer minorities in the US by 2043.
What about mixed race people? In this era, its quite possible for someone to be a very diverse mix of races. Race it seems is an antiquated way of pigeon-holing people. It takes away your culture and nationality, its sticks you in a box based purely on your skin colour.
My New Zealand born father goes on about the “bloody immigrants”. He might like to remember that his wife was British born, as were myself and my brother. Go back to his Grandparents and they were immigrants to this country also. We ARE the immigrants he is complaining about. Or because we are white and speak with kiwi accents – does this make us ok?
Personally, I love the diversity that immigration gives us. From my lovely Asian neighbours (forgive me as I don’t know which country they are from) to the Arabic speaking, Muslim woman and her son who I chatted with at the vets last night about their beloved cat. To the elderly Chinese neighbours of my Mum’s who speak hardly any English but always smile and wave. To the Ukrainian family two doors down with the toddler, who we always stop to say “hi” to when we walk the dogs. They have come here to make a better life for themselves and their families – exactly the same reason why my parents moved from the UK to New Zealand and my grandparents on my father’s side did the same. To the Irish and Filipino workers who have come to my city to help rebuild after our earthquakes.
These are my fellow New Zealanders – regardless of their skin colour and place of birth.