Black Lives Matter; in 2020 racism isn’t acceptable and much less a system that purposefully or mistakenly promotes racism. We at Art of Headshots, care, care about the evolution of a better society for all.
While in High School I joined the Rugby team and played bench all year because I was the shortest player and I run sort of funny, I have one leg shorter than the other. Not being allowed to play one game after the other seemed unfair towards me, but another player also played bench all year, and his name was Wayne Scott.
Wayne was an enlightened human being, and I remember always admiring him and his multi-faceted abilities – he was a great player and worked harder than anybody. I remember one day debating with him about racism; I claimed racism in the ’80s no longer existing and will never forget his response and what happened the days following our conversation.
“Racism no longer exist’s,” I remember making this statement to Wayne in Grade 10 at Earl Haig SS., “You think, so?”, I was surprised. “Often a teacher congratulates me for being a good student, but what I hear is – ‘you are black and a good student,’ not the best student but for being black and a good student—while it might be well-meaning, singled out for the colour of my skin and not my accolades.” “At lunch, kids will say that I am not black, because I am a hard-working student, What doe this mean,” exclaimed Wayne.
As months passed, while Wayne and I sat on the bench for games upon games without playing Rugy, something horrified me, and I, to this day, feel nauseated by merely being there. Someone in the team asked our teacher coach why he wouldn’t let Wayne play? Was it because Wayne was black? My teacher, who I can not remember his name, said, “I have nothing against black people, as a matter fact, I think everyone should own one.” Everyone laughed, and even as I joined in the laughter, I wondered who like me felt horrible for singling Wayne in such a hateful manner?
As a leader for Art of Headshots, we have lots of personal goals, but ahead of our goals is our social responsibility and love for all. ‘Black Lives Matter,’ not just physically but emotionally… We want all our customers to know that our team cares about eliminating racism Worldwide, we feel pain for African Canadians injustice.
Prior to publishing this blog about my personal experience and mainly to make it clear on how I feel about black lives, I had sent a request for either revision or permission for using Wayne’s name in this story. I am still keeping his last name out. This is what he replied to me;
“Reading this over with my wife now. Really sincerely thank you for sending this. We’re sharing some of our experiences in high school. She comes from a similar background and has similar recollections. I honestly don’t recall the particular comment but it rings true. There were all kinds of “jokes” like the one you mentioned. I suppose at the time for self-preservation I’d ignore them as best I could. The comment about not being black enough also rings true as it was another part of my daily experience.
The truth is I was never really that crazy about Rugby to this day I couldn’t properly tell you what all the rules are. Further, while I was athletic I’d decided in either grade 9 or 10 not to really pursue sports so much as it seemed that it was the expected thing for black students, didn’t want to be known as yet another black athlete (on that front I feel differently these days and would not let that stop me from sports). I joined the team strictly because the year prior Don was on the team and became student council president — he had the whole team with him on stage when he gave his speech. Not being the most popular student I figured having the team behind me would help when I ran 🙂
Anyways thanks once again for thinking of me and bringing that memory back.
Black lives matter, “I had the opportunity to grow up in Canada and go to University and work in the United States. As a black man, my perspective of both countries is quite different than those of my white friends. Racism in the US is in your face. It’s always present. But in Canada, it’s there but subtle. My goal in creating Body Break, 32 years ago, was to break down barriers and change attitudes. I wanted to show that regardless of your physical ability, your ethnicity, the colour of your skin, we can all live, work and play together.” Hal Johnson
Tony McAleer is the author of ‘The cure of hate,’ formally a white supremacist recruiter, now teaching others to journey from violent extremism to radical compassion. Black Lives Matter movement will benefit from Tony and others who can educate parents on how to prevent white supremacy in their homes.
People fall into extremist groups because they want a ““a sense of belonging, a sense of camaraderie, meaning and significance”, and are fooled by recruiters and feel a purpose.
What values are we teaching our children to be compassionate and have a sense of belonging rather than steering to hate to fulfill that void? How can we give our kids a definite purpose, to be in service rather than hate?
Hoping that each generation we become better than the last generation because, unfortunately as seen on tv with Floyd, weeks ago and two additional murders by hanging in Los Angeles we are a long way from having found the cure for hate.