Because You Are Different …

Catterel says: “. . . . I was perplexed that prejudice could arise solely on the basis of skin colour, ethnicity or religion. To me what mattered was whether the person was decent, fun and good company. The individual, not the group, attracted or repelled me. How can you reject an entire population group? You might as well start persecuting people because they are left-handed, wear glasses or have ginger hair. . . . “

catterel

I grew up in a white working-class area of the English Midlands in the middle of the twentieth century, and didn’t meet anyone who wasn’t white till I went to university in Liverpool in 1959. In my hall of residence, among others, there was a jolly Jamaican making delicious dishes in our shared kitchen, a sweet Chinese girl who played the piano like a professional, and a beautiful Indian girl with long hair down to her ankles. We also had a black Jamaican President of the Students’ Union in the early sixties. So my primary reaction was Wow! Awe and admiration! These were amazing, talented and exotic people, interesting to talk to and be with.

My first personal encounter with racism came a couple of years later in France, where my landlady was most upset because her niece was set on marrying an Algerian. I was studying in an international…

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2 thoughts on “Because You Are Different …

  1. Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful post, Uta!
    I visited there and left this comment:

    Excellent, important, timely! Thank you for sharing this! I grew up in a poor neighborhood with families of several races, religions, languages, political leanings, etc. Yet, we all got along and helped each other and celebrated life with each other, etc. 🙂

    By the way, in my immediate family (through marriage and adoption) we are Caucasian, African-American, Bi-racial, Mexican, Chinese, Korean, and African. It is so wonderful! 🙂

    Again, thank you so much for your words/post! 🙂
    HUGS,
    Carolyn

    HUGS and ❤ to you, too, Uta! 🙂

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