This is a maths blog ordinarily, but there are extraordinary events happening in the USA just now, and I want to offer my support to the protestors. I don’t do the social media thing so won’t be tweeting out and what-have-you, but I can, at least, show my support here.
The situation in the US is long-standing and terrible, and worthy of protest. Here in the UK there is still institutional racism in many parts of society, as well as casual racism in many areas of life. We must be relentless in our efforts to end racism in all its forms.
On Saturday I’ll be going to a gathering in Caerphilly (covid guidelines allowing), to show my support for the fight against racism. I’m committed to supporting my BAME colleagues at work however I can, as well as combatting racism outside of work, in daily life.
Of course, I must also be aware that I’ve grown up in a society tainted by racism, and I can’t help but have been affected by it. I’m also committed to examining my own thoughts, ideas and behaviour to make sure I have not unwittingly internalised racism (or other forms of bigotry). The struggle continues.
Addendum: I’ve read a bunch of books on the subject of racism and thought I’d record some below, in case they are of interest:
- Soledad Brother: The prison letters of George Jackson
- The autobiography of Malcolm X by Malcolm X and Alex Haley
- Roots by Alex Haley
- Any of James Baldwin’s books
- Any of Toni Morrison’s books, especially Beloved
- For am Australian angle, Sally Morgan’s My Place
- More controversially, perhaps: To Kill a Mocking Bird and the follow-up Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee; the latter book is not as famous to TKAMB, but I found it very insightful as to the mindset of people in the deep South of America. This mindset isn’t always what I want to hear, but if we are to change society, we have to start from where we are not from where we would like to be.
- If you don’t have the time just now to read a whole novel, then the great Gil Scott-Heron was able to get his point across in just over 2 minutes.