November 17, 2013
Deepto was going to preschool at that time, one day started crying while talking about what happened at school. Said that someone called him “Brown”. I told him very normally that we are brown. Still he was crying! I asked him that if the person said it in a mean tone? He said yes while crying. I told him that if someone calls him brown in a mean tone that’s wrong. Then showed him a book of his. That was a book of human body. Told him, “See every human being has flesh, blood, skeleton, eyes, nose etc. The only difference is the skin color because of pigmentation. Because of it, people look different. When his dad returned home in the evening three of us put our hands side by side. I told him, see three of us in the same family have three shades of same color. There is no reason to talk mean about anybody’s color and also no need to feel ashamed of own color. After several days same story! Understood that the child who was doing that had no idea of any other race except white. And also have negative impression of others.
While he was in kindergarten or first grade said that one of his classmates said that he is light brown. The girl was black. I immediately told him that brown is always brown. There is no dark brown, light brown. Then gave him a lecture on colors! Told him, if someone says you are brown reply, “Yes I am brown”. If the person says it with a mean attitude, ask, “Does it bother you?” He had friendship with a boy at school. Other children didn’t want to play with that boy. He might had some challenges. Deepto used to give him company, played with him. After certain time he was very upset. Said, that boy said such thing about Deepto’s dad that it hurt his feelings. I asked and came to know that the boy said about his color! I told him, “You have to figure it out what to do.” The friendship kept on for some days. Later it went away. I think, at the boy’s house dark skinned people aren’t viewed respectfully! When people see more person of different race, know them, their tolerance increases, misconceptions go away, they learn to respect others.
Don’t want to talk about racism of other race’s people! Among Bangladeshi the color issue “fair” and “dark” is in such a level that they have no right to talk about other race’s racism. In Bangladesh the color of the skin varies from as white as a white person to as dark as a black person. It’s a variety of so many shades. Bangladesh is a mosaic of many different colors, looks, religions. But they belong to the same culture, Bengali culture. This has a long history of pride. People came from many countries of different colors for many years, starting many hundreds years ago. All of them mixed together under the umbrella of the same culture, same language. Also there were Natives of the land from thousands years back. All are Bengali of Bangladesh. There are also many groups of tribal people who have different language and their own culture. Now these days they are being called Native people. Others (majority) are Bengali. I think the color issue became more obvious during the colonial period. Bangladesh was part of Indian subcontinent (Now India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh). It was a huge country which was called “Bharat.” British came and made their colony for two hundred years. I think they incorporated the “Farsha (fair)” and “Kalo (Black)” thinking and made the light-skinned people of India boast of their color and put down the dark-skinned. For hundreds of years this thing went on. Thousands years back Aryans came to the subcontinent of majority dark-skinned people and dominated them, the seed of color issue was planted! Most of the people fail the color test! Even if that person is highly educated and have progressive mentality. They can spare everything except “black (dark) skin”. Still the culture of arranged marriage of Indian subcontinent is there. A dark mom would look for his dark-skinned son a fair-skinned daughter-in-law even though she also has dark-skinned daughter!
The conception of beauty is in the brain. Nobody knows who would look beautiful to someone’s eyes. But the so-called conception of beauty started thousands of thousands years back when someone or some group of people decided it and that conception was accepted by majority and kept passing on the thinking generations after generations. If that first person or group of people chose black instead of white, then today people would prefer black instead of white as the symbol of beauty! These days almost everybody knows that human being’s root is in Africa. Our ancestor came from Africa. Can watch the documentary “Journey of Man” by Spencer Wales in YouTube.