It is hard. It is challenging. And, it is infuriating. Dealing with racial attacks of any level is not easy – but, standing up for it is worth it. Irrespective of where you are, there is always a good chance of being a recipient of blatant or subtle racial discrimination and racism. It happens at work, in schools. If you find yourself being a subject of constant racial discrimination, here are ways to tackle it….
Speak up and speak out, ensure you make your thoughts heard.
As a rule, never label anyone a racist. The urge to take on the accuser in an upfront manner, should be avoided for your own mental peace. Remember, drama leads to nowhere. While it is important to be straight-forward in your approach, digress from blatant accusation as this could back-fire.
Be to the point about what you feel, while expressing your displeasure. Focus on how you feel the comment made by the person is an unfair stance, without pointing fingers at the person. And, it is important to end the conversation with clarity and respect.
Open ended questioning works wonders at the workplace
Being argumentative and assertive are two diametrically opposite things. And, always choose the latter. Unfortunately, most of us do not get the difference. But, if you have had doubts in the past, here is the clarification: Being argumentative is about forcing your views or ideals upon someone. You do not give the other person an option to reflect and reach a consensus with you. Being assertive on the other hand is about being vocal without an iota of animosity.
If you feel the exchange of views are taking an ugly turn; keep your calm and continue the discussion over open ended questions like, Why do you think that’s funny? Why did you say that? Why talk about XYZ in such a manner? What do you mean? Remember to be constructive in your approach all throughout the conversation and be gentle in your tone.
Keep yourself safe and be alert. People understand as per their levels of perception, so you really cannot do much beyond a point. Ensure you put your point across and move on – literally and figuratively. If the person you are dealing with has anger issues, it is always better to keep a safe distance from them and have the conversation in a crowded area than a secluded spot where the chances are mighty of him/her assaulting you.
Educate and inform
Last but not the least, when sensitive issues like these are discussed, it is always good to give the other party the benefit of doubt. Understand that a lot of people have misinformed perspectives that lead to instances of racial discrimination. Racism is not a subject which is openly spoken about at schools and universities. So, it is normal for people to be ignorant of the concept and the repercussions.
If it is a junior or a family member who happened to pass a rather weird comment; it is best to plan a lengthy conversation with them. Take a laptop along, and show them via research about how their perspective is misplaced. Make your feelings clear and conversations crisp.
There is virtually nowhere on planet earth where racism, in one form or another, is not present. From the most advanced Western democracies, to the most under-developed countries, the color of your skin, your ethnicity, or your tribal origins, are going to be a factor in how you are treated by others.
People judge each other simply by how they look—darker skinned, lighter skinned, taller or shorter. Racial prejudice is causing untold suffering and injustice to hundreds of millions of human beings around the world.
Yoga Icon Wai Lana wants us to know that all of this suffering is caused by a misunderstanding that can easily be corrected.
In her latest music video, Colors, which she released to commemorate International Day of Yoga 2018, Wai Lana presents a serious message in a fun-filled, foot-stomping, colorful dance routine. Drawn from the wisdom of yoga, she asks us to consider whether we judge each other by the color of the clothes we are wearing.
Because we change our clothes daily, any such judgment would be illogical. Likewise, yoga wisdom reveals that we are not our material bodies, which are also constantly changing. Rather we are all spiritual beings, all brothers and sisters, all related, in the truest sense. The further this knowledge spreads, the less influence racism will have in the world.