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I hear people saying that they 'do not see colour' a lot in my journey of life, and every time I hear it, I think the same thing.... if you can tell me the colour of your car, the colour of the t-shirt I'm wearing, and the colour of your door, I need you to stop telling me that you do not see colour, and most importantly, my colour.
We all see colour! The difference is how we perceive that colour, and the stereotypes we hold about, the individual's colour.
To not see colour means you fail to see when the victims of a crime are one particular colour, or when holocausts of the most barbaric nature, and against humainty, are inflicted upon a people of one colour.... we minimize, disregard and silence these issues.
When I am told someone dos not see colour, I aks "Is black/brown, to you, synonymous with something negative? If not, why can't you see it??"
I know we have been taught to relate black with badness through some of the medias negative filtering; our imperialistic, white, patriarchal, and supremacist system, and the pseudoscience of classifying races by characteristics, with the myth that one is more superior than the other (we have the white supremacist, Blumenbach, 1752-1840, to thank for this), but your refusal to acknowledge seeing colour smacks of an ignorance of your privilege (believed privilege, or need to deny privilege).
If you can use terms such as blackmail, black magic, blacklisted, dark mood, black market, etc, you are fully able to say you are aware of, 1) the colour black, and 2) the universal negative undertone of demonizing its presence. However, I need you to understand that these are all man made concepts and descriptions, and skin colour is God given/born. It does not represent or read-as, any of these things, to those who are not racist, or holding the internal values of racism.
I use 'race' as a term to help you get my point, but sense allows us to understand that it is a social concept, and there is one race, the human race.
It is therefore very disrespectful to tell someone you do not see their colour; the colour that is their skin, and therefore a part of them. It is also a sign of cognitive dissonance - raising the question of why you are choosing not to see and acknowledge the person's colour... is their colour an issue to you? If it's not, why are you fooling yourself, insulting your eyes, and disrespecting your brain, by pretending your iris is not working with your pupil, to work with your lens to focus light onto the retina, to send impulses along your optic nerve to your brain, to tell you this?
I see colour, and it is okay, because I will not, and do not, assign negative connotations to skin colour. I see your colour, notice some of the the elements you are packaged within (hair colour, height, gender etc), as well as taking the time to get to know you for who you are, not for what your colour, hairstyle, or gender, representds in society. It is being aware of negative stereotypes, and allowing yourself to be autonomous and open enpugh, to experience the individual for yourself.
Agree or disagree, that is the beauty of opinion, but please, please do not insult me by telling me you do not see my colour.
As a footnote, it might be helpful and more appropriate to acknowledge that you are not blind and can see colour, but discuss, or just note, that you do not hold negative connotations about colour, so the person's colour is not an issue or a factor - because trust me, you damn well see my colour when I walk in, coated in melanin, skin glowing with my sun kissed complexion, and feeling like a black diamond... how dare you say you don't see it lol, feel free to see it, thank you
By Novena-Chanel Davies, The Equilibrium Coach™ - 25th June 2015 - www.novena-chanel.com
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Copyright © 2015 Novena-Chanel Davies. All Rights Reserved.
Novena-Chanel is a London-based entrepreneur, working as a writer (contributing to magazines and websites), a registered integrative Counsellor/Psychotherapist, Life Coach, Wellbeing Consultant, Workshop Facilitator, Nutritional advisor, Reiki Practitioner, and Presenter. She is also the Founder and Director of The Youth Caterpillar Project: a youth social enterprise that provides Counselling, Mentoring, Family Mediation (teen-to-parent) and workshops to young people and their families. Find out more by visiting her at www.novena-chanel.com