Let me start by saying that the idea that racism can be casual, or unintentional or without consequence is appalling.

So yesterday, I hear speeches by Morris and Macron. These have been defended as not racist, or casually racist, unintentionally racist etc. I am not going to dwell, because self-love liberates. Liberates us all. Morris uses the ‘N’ word casually, no reaction from her listeners. Macron makes a speech blaming African mothers of 8 children for the continent’s malaise (Misogynoir Alert!) and people defend that! Like Africa is one compound and we are all huddled around a single pot of Western handouts. Africa’s symbolisation as other, as less than human, as incompetent, has always framed African interaction with the rest of the world, whether it be on the continent or the diaspora.

The way we see Africa is the way we see black people. The way we see blackness is how we see Africa. Not worthy of dignity, not worthy of respect, not worthy of equality, and ultimately not worthy of humanity. There is nothing casual about that. Nothing.

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African woman, lawyer, teacher, poet and researcher. Singer of songs, writer of words, very occasional dancer of dances. I seek new ways of interpreting the African experience within our consciousness to challenge static ideology.

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