As a young child I was often told do as I say and not as I do, by my parents whenever I pointed out inaccuracies of hypocrisies on their part. The UKs choice of words towards the protestors when many defended Dominic Cummings and the sunbathers is the epitome of this.
I have watched the stories unfold in the press over the past weekend. I have seen the press sensationalise the one officer that got injured and thrown from his horse during the protest (I hope they are well).
I have had to listen to the hypocritical advice given by Priti Patel to avoid the protest and stay home. Her words are why I would like to see the phrase BAME abolished but thats a discussion for another day. It seems that the Conservative government has fallen onto ‘thuggery’ as the buzz word of the moment, smacks of Donald Trump, right?!
I watched the London Black Lives Matter protest from overseas, acutely aware that I am getting to witness living history. I am proud to be British, Black British AND West Indian, these are not incongruent to each other. But that pride does not allow me to be ignorant to the fact that even in the year 2020 black people are not treated as equal. I also watched Boris Johnson (the UK prime Minister) boast about shaking the hands of COVID positive patients whilst using no PPE. I had to witness him double down on strong and wrong with regards to the actions of Dominic Cummings. Boris, according to Michael Gove, missed five coronavirus meetings, causing the UK to lose “a crucial five weeks in the fight to tackle the dangerous threat of coronavirus’. Is such a morally corrupt individual that he cheated on his wife Marina Wheeler, whom according to the guardian ‘its one affair to many.
But his party doesn’t care’. In fact, its very apparent that Boris himself doesn’t even care, his actions shout that. He not only impregnated the latest woman he used to besmirch his marriage vows, but then moved said side chick into 10 Downing Street when he became Prime Minister. He has been the most absentee Prime Minister that the UK has ever had, and at a time when one is needed to be active and present his actions speak far louder than any of his words.
My parents were nurses who gave over 70 years combined to the NHS. The systemic racism in the UK is causing Black people to die from COVID-19 at a disproportionate rate than any other race. I know they would not be dishonoured by people marching and would in fact appreciate that people are taking action through protest to make others lives better. It’s ignorant, prejudiced and I would go as far as saying racist to post about the protest in a manner that suggests we are selfish when no one spoke about the droves of a certain demographic who broke lockdown rules just so they could get a tan. The very same people who now want to look down on people campaigning for rights for those with coloured skin, who are only asking for equality!
If you are going to jump in the bandwagon of copying and pasting that racist Facebook status, please let me know. Id rather not have any racists on my facebook page or hiding amongst my friends.
So i’m going to drop some statistics for you:
Black people make up 12% of London’s population but made up 31% of arrests during lockdown
“The Met, which covers London, issued 973 fines between 27 March and 14 May. White people, who make up 59% of London’s population, received 444 fines, or 46% of the total; black people, who make up 12% of London’s population, received 253 fines, or 26%. Asian people, who make up 18% of London’s population, received 23% of the fines.” (Source: https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.theguardian.com/uk-news/2020/jun/03/met-police-twice-as-likely-to-fine-black-people-over-lockdown-breaches-research)
- as at March 2019, over 1.2 million people were employed by the NHS
- of NHS staff whose ethnicity was known, 4 out of 5 (79.2%) were White (including White ethnic minorities), and 1 in 5 (20.7%) were from all other ethnic groups
- there was a higher percentage of staff in medical roles (working as doctors in hospitals and community health services) from the Asian, Chinese, Mixed and Other ethnic groups than in non-medical roles
- among the non-medical workforce, staff from the Asian, Black, Mixed and Other ethnic groups made up a smaller number of those at senior grades (bands 8a to 9) and the ‘very senior manager’ grade than at the support (bands 1 to 4) and middle grades (bands 5 to 7)
- a higher percentage of junior doctors were from the Black, Chinese, Mixed and Other groups than senior doctors
STOP & SEARCH
- between April 2018 and March 2019, there were 375,588 stop and searches in England and Wales (excluding vehicle searches)
- there were 7 stop and searches for every 1,000 people, down from 25 per 1,000 people between April 2009 and March 2010
- stop and search rates have fallen for every ethnic group, but at different rates
- between April 2018 and March 2019, there were 4 stop and searches for every 1,000 White people, compared with 38 for every 1,000 Black people
- almost half of all stop and searches took place in the Metropolitan Police force area in London
- there were 22 stop and searches for every 1,000 people in London, the highest rate out of all police force areas
- London had the highest stop and search rates for all ethnic groups apart from Black (Dorset) and White (Merseyside)
- there were 675,461 arrests in 2017/18, a fall of 9% on the previous year
- Black people were over 3 times as likely to be arrested as White people – there were 35 arrests for every 1,000 Black people, and 10 arrests for every 1,000 White people
- overall, men were 6 times as likely to be arrested as women – there were 22 arrests for every 1,000 men, and 4 arrests for every 1,000 women
- Black women were more than twice as likely to be arrested as White women – there were 7 arrests for every 1,000 Black women, and 3 arrests for every 1,000 White women
- figures for 2017/18 exclude Lancashire Police as they were unable to provide data on arrests
- on average in the 3 years from 2015/16 to 2017/18, just under a third of households in the UK had a weekly income below £400, and just over a third had a weekly income over £800 (before tax)
- Black households were most likely out of all ethnic groups to have a weekly income of less than £400, and Indian households most likely to have a weekly income of £1000 or more
Black Caribbean pupils were twice as likely to be temporarily excluded from school as White British pupils. 10.2% were temporarily excluded, compared with 5.2% of White British pupils. (England, 2016/17)
Black Caribbean pupils are almost three times as likely to be permanently excluded as White British pupils. 0.28% were permanently excluded, compared with 0.10% of White British pupils. (England, 2016/17)
Black Caribbean people had the highest rate of detention under the Mental Health Act out of all ethnic groups, at 254 detentions per 100,000 people. This was 3.7 times as high as the rate for White British people (69 per 100,000 people). (England, 2017/18)
Black Caribbean adults were the most likely to use mental health and learning disability services out of all ethnic groups where the data was reliable. Nearly 4,800 adults per 100,000 of the Black Caribbean population did so, compared with just over 3,600 per 100,000 White British people. (England, 2014/15)
So when you look for someone to hold blame for the over 40,000 who have died from COVID-19, don’t look to black people asking for equality. Look to your government and their failings first. Your choice of words shouts “Do as I say and not as I do”…we are too far past that sentiment