What does Racism in Australia look like
This is a conversation from a few months ago – smack bang in the middle of one of 2020’s major global offerings – a look at race.
Black Lives Matter exploded with fervour in the US after the police killing of George Floyd. A powder keg was ignited both in the US and in many places across the globe, leading to one giant and multifaceted conversation on race, racism, and how people of colour have been treated and marginalised in a lot of society.
Here in Australia was no different, as protests amongst the confusion and government restrictions od COVID-19 took place, with the US topic of deaths in police custody also having roots here too.
For me, the conversation is one that can’t be ignored, and the rhetoric of “It’s not enough to not be racist, one must be anti-racist” soon spread, which lead to my own deep reflection.
It’s easy to stand back and say “I’m not racist” but what does that do to help change such deeply rooted systemic and casual racism?
I’m not a rapist either, but sitting on hands and hiding behind saying that does nothing to reduce assault when I can actually do something to heal more men and prevent them from becoming perpetrators.
So, when this hit I knew I had to do something – and what can I do? Well, I can start with a conversation, I can use the platform I have to highlight the voices and experiences of people of colour.
Which led me instantly to reach out to my good friend Nick Bradley-Qalilawa. I have had him on stage at a Beyond The Beers event before where we spoke about race, and he also shared some fascinating and captivating stories of growing up (in part) in Fiji.
In this Episode:
In this conversation, Nick takes us into what it was like growing up in Australia the son of a Fijian father and a white European mother. He had different experiences both in his largely white family and also in a largely white society in which he somehow became exempt from being “just another blackfella”.
I learned a lot during this time in the global conversation on race. I listened to books, read pieces, watched videos, spoke to friends, and consumed content from many people of colour, Nick being one of them. I have always learned from this man. I appreciate his insight and unique intelligence, and his generosity in sharing his experiences.
Some of his stories in here, some of the things he shared that he’s still working to understand, really made me sit back and get a lot of pieces I hadn’t had fall into place yet when it comes to racism.
I also had to sit back and reflect on where I have been an active participant in some of the same kinds of situations Nick discussed.
I wanted to bring this to my podcast and publish it because it was not designed to be a popular topic conversation when everyone was walking about it. It was meant to make a dent and spurn more conversation. I hope that does this via this podcast. Because Nick sure is an Everyday Legend.
I trust you will get something from this conversation. Please share it with someone you think would enjoy, benefit from, and potentially be lovingly challenged by its content.
Where to find Nick
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