17 January 2010

Check what you're used to.

Old camera

Why is black suffering so much more graphic in media than the white one? It’s clear to me that for whole spectrum of reasons black people globally are a lot worse of financially and otherwise and America electing Obama changes that very little. Long suffering Haiti is on the news and for all the wrong reasons. My condolences whatever they are worth. But why is the news never scared to publish photos of black people suffering? It seems to have to be expressed in a very literal way. For most other people a suggestion and symbolism of a disaster is enough, and anyway it is considered to be more tasteful, but for Africans and other black people on the Diaspora it is as if only showing the corpse is enough to communicate that death has taken place. It tells a sad story about us as people and it seems to me that for some reason very few ever care to even notice this.

My theory is that it’s because of god complex combined with tradition of showing starvation and then asking for money to end it. We as the global North have been the un-PR people of the worst kind for the global South and if someone for decades and even centuries would have portrayed us in a similarly simplified manner, we would have declared a war long time ago. Come to think of it, we probably did and for a lot worse reasons.

The ongoing insult that is the simplification of the African continent – the favourite pastime of the Northerners – was proven yet again with the tragic events of Angolan football tournament. But to see direct correlation between that and the forthcoming World Cup just because they are on the same continent is like criticising Norwegians for something that happens in Serbia. Again, I have a theory; it is either ignorant or racist. Probably both.

Ahhhh, I am back in South Africa… this country really tickles me the wrong way sometimes. In Finland it is so easy to pretend that world is not so incredibly unfair place. I’d be fool not to take a cue from that even if it won’t change the world as such.

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