While in Manchester, I have met black people from Nigeria, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Jamaica, among many other places. I’m always amazed at how different we all are, but how our stories regarding discrimination, racism, etc. are similar in regards to certain aspects. While in the Student Union, I saw a poster from the NUS Black Students Campaign. Although this poster was on the door along with many other posters, it drew my attention with the world “N****S” in the first sentence, so I had to read it because I figured it had to be some type of racist poster. Surprisingly, it wasn’t.  To me, it expresses a conglomeration of how black people are viewed not only from non-blacks, but also from within the black community itself. Many of these viewpoints expressed, I believe, lead to blacks struggles with living in any society, domestically or abroad.

Read below:

“Because…all Black people are n****s and if we’re not we’re p***s or half-castes or mongrels excluded from school as children and under-marked in college as students then unemployed as graduates although everyone knows that if we do have a job it’s to fill quotas and if we don’t we’re state scroungers and because we’re the first to be sacked and the last to be promoted and because we’re underrepresented in parliament and over-represented in prisons and psychiatric wards and if we complain we’re militants, playing the race card and if we don’t it’s our slave mentality and when we demand equality we really mean special treatment and if we wear traditional clothes or have beards we’re backward or if we wear a headscarf we’re oppressed and if we wear hoodies we’re a threat and if we don’t we’re trying to be white and if we inter-racially marry we’re muddying the genes and if we don’t it’s because we’ve been forced by our families and if our friends are black we’re still self-segregating and if they’re not we’re self hating and if we’re housed near other minorities it’s a ghetto or little India and if we’re not we’re spoiling the character or taking over, and if we’re attacked it must be an ethnic problem or community tension caused by us for just being there and if we’re not, we must be doing the attacking because we’re over policed as citizens but under-policed as victims and because we’re all muggers, drug dealers, addicts or terrorists anyway and because we should all go back to where we came from even if we’ve never been there and take our multiculturalism with us but leave our food and music and…for lots of other reasons…we are a part of the NUS black students campaign.”

According to Kanja Sesay, MMU’s Black Students officer, the organization “represent[s] the largest constituency of Black students in Europe and students of African, Asian, Arab and Caribbean descent, at a local and national level on all issues affecting Black students. Everyone’s support is welcome.”

 I thought this was an interesting cause and was delighted that the school had an organization like this. Of course, racism exists and the degree varies based on where one lives, but I like how this organization did not only focus on the black person’s plight. I have never seen a Black student organization like this that focuses on so many disparities in the community, university and worldwide. In fact, “An NUS report has shown that Black students face a range of barriers in further and higher education, which are affecting satisfaction and attainment.” The organizations goal is to address these concerns.

What is your reaction to this passage?

To learn more about the report, read here http://www.nus.org.uk/en/Campaigns/BlackStudents/Race-for-Equality/

Visit this website for more information about the organization in general: http://www.nus.org.uk/Campaigns/BlackStudents/

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