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Throughout my life, I have heard racial remarks aimed at a few of my friends. The comments reminded me of Sephy from "Noughts and Crosses," who overheard a crowd yelling that blankers were never allowed in their institute. Like Sephy, I'd try to ease the situation by wrongly referring to the crowd as the blankers. As a result of their job transition and relocation to a new place, my parents chose to send me to a public school during seventh grade. This is where I first saw bigotry remarks. I'd made a new friend in the form of an African American child. Barely did I know that the other students never liked this boy. During my first two weeks in school, everyone was so good to me and nobody appeared to bother about our friendship with Mark (My African American friend). However, nobody bothered to inform me that they did not like Mark because of his color. Having grown as a Christian, I believed that one should love his friend as he loves himself, therefore, racial discrimination should not be part of our society. I knew of the situation of Sephy as described by Malorie in Chapter 3 of his book where he had tried to calm Callum with no success. From a personal understanding, racism can cause enmity.
It all began during the third week of my school day. As we were having lunch, a beautiful girl by the name Rosa passed by, I knew all through that Mark liked Rosa. I, therefore, shouted to Mark, “There goes your Angel”. One young boy who I always thought was a good friend said, “Let me assume I did not hear that you IDIOT”. “I was quick to respond to him, “What?? Why say that?” He replied by pulling a slap on my cheek that He liked Rosa as well and he does not believe she is worth a “black Nigger”. He went on to tell me that I was just new and should consult because lamenting on something. I did not understand what this kid meant (Persson 78). I, however, did not fight back, instead, I called Mark and we walked away. I went on narrating to Mark about a similar situation that had faced Callum after he was insulted by Sephy. Since that day every student viewed me as a traitor because I had befriended Mark. I also remembered the situation where Sephy’s father went to sleep thinking that he has not freedom to associate with the people of the cross.
The rest of the schooling year was one kind of a hell to me. No one was willing to talk to me and Mark, a situation that almost made me drop Mark as a friend but this was late. I could always find some courage from the story of Noughts and crosses. I could figure out the situation of the fight that one’s broke in the house of Callum between Jude and Lynette his sister after she insisted she is a cross. I never wanted this to happen in my school life where I was viewed as a traitor of the White students (Persson 76). I was even viewed to be worse than Mark who was the African American student. I could feel unwanted in my world but I did not know what I could have done.
To my surplice, my parents also knew about the situation and this made me have some family issues. Having had a caring father with traits as those of Callum’s dad, my father was quick to ask me what had been happening in my school results since this issue had become mental. Callum’s father had assisted in breaking the fight between Jude and Lynette and also explained the behavior of Lynette to other people. After she had been attacked by nought men resulting to brain infections.
I feared that I could as well acquire brain infection as a result of excess thoughts trying to evaluate myself. I was, however, lucky to have a loving mother who later came to my rescue and assisted me to get over the situation. My mother also had me move from that school to a near institution where I sought to have loving friends who were never discriminative. I got over the situation and went on to explain to my family what had been happening all along (Persson 65). My father was sorrowful and helped me realize that the kids from my former school had never been taught about the effects of discrimination. Racial discrimination is a serious issue that results in physical and mental destruction Just as the beating on Lynette that had caused her brain infections.
It has come to my attention that the world we are leaving today consists of various stereotypes that are placed on every race. From the reading on Noughts and Crosses, I borrowed the idea of ignorance to demonstrate how my ignorant behavior resulted to stereotyping. I think that it is necessary to educate every kid on the harms of racial discrimination and what it can result in causing in an individual.
From the writing by Malorie Blackman, he suggests that “Jed and Lynette were ambushed by a team of naught men causing brain damage to Lynette”(87). I use the author’s idea as well to demonstrate the influence of isolation from other kids in my former school for having associated with a black African American student. Such dramatic turnovers can have a great impact on our lives and affect how we figure out ourselves. For instance, from a personal perspective, I believed in loving everybody equally despite the color or origin. This was almost being changed by my fellow schoolmates who made me feel that associating with children from other races is a curse (Persson 56). I find the author engaging when he talks about how Sephy attempted to calm Callum with no success. I expected that the same thing would happen to me. I always thought that the boy who had insulted me could apologize because I was ready to forgive and move on but to my surprise, this never occurred. Instead, other students went on to hate on me as well as Mark and keeping away from me just as the author demonstrates by saying that, “Callum went on to tell Sephy to keep away from him while at school for her own security”(75).
I have also learned that racial discrimination can also result to family misunderstanding and break ups. In such situation, children can end up fighting with their parents or even cause suicide for some family members. I have experienced various situations where children have committed suicide due to family quarrels and misunderstanding.
My main impact of using the theme of racial discrimination is to help in encouraging people who face racism in our society today. I intend to show them that discrimination can occur despite the color or race. According to the latest research carried out, it is evident that there is significant relationship between discrimination, mental and physical health, reduced production and racism. I used my example of being a poor performer in school because of the pressure of discrimination from other students.
I also used the idea of the author that racism can result to social barrier which results to social disadvantages in the life of an individual. From reading on Noughts and crosses, for instance, the author says that Sephy’s father paused some threat to a freedom fighter by threatening to kill him. Such a barrier is likely to affect the social participation of an individual due to the fear of being killed. From a personal perspective, discrimination made me feel like I was from a lower class from anybody else. I wondered why making friends from people coming from other races would cause this frustration in my young life. I also felt that Mark was frustrated, angered and offended for being racially discriminated.
In the society today, there is a drastic change of the ethnic combination of people living in various countries. This has resulted in panic and fear of what many might not explain. I think that it is the high time people need to come to the realization that we are one people despite our color and place of origin. Every country should be like America where the majority are nonwhite (Persson 67). This will result in creation of nationwide psyche and people will gain some deeper sense of their country.
It was important for the author to demonstrate how other people in the story were discriminated. Contrary to this, I was able to demonstrate how a friend faced racial discrimination. From an individual research, I have to the understanding that people from the Australian society are derived from celebrating their cultural diversity because of the situation in the country. This makes people be uncomfortable and insecure since they feel unaccepted. I used the same idea to demonstrate my situation after moving into a new school. Discrimination resulted to a negative view of my family members which had a negative impact towards my family life. The author demonstrates how the same discrimination was between people from the nought region and the crosses. It was important for the author to demonstrate the cultural practices as well as the occupation of these people so that we can have a better understanding of racism within the context.
I, however, appreciate the author because he goes down to demonstrate how the noughts are less educated. The same thing happens in our society today. Most people fear to go to school because they fear that they are inferior. The author demonstrates this by saying that, “No Blankers are allowed in our institution”. I failed to this idea because I want to demonstrate the impact of education in our life. Despite being discriminated I did not fear to go to another school. It is always important to try out a new thing in life despite the situation.
Today people continue judging each other through the ethnic background and skin color. This should stop and people need to judge others by their characteristics. The novel is therefore significant to our modern society but people with the white color appear to be dominating others. They look down on people with dark skin. The best example is the 1955-1968 Black People Civil Right Drive.
Persson Penzer, A. (2017). Blank Faces, Blank Minds: The Postcolonial Racial Binary Reversed in Malorie Blackman's Noughts & Crosses.
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