June 24, 2006

Can we just let them be kids, please?

The sensitivity to skin color today-
Is being taken too far, wouldn’t you say?
Now no longer a child
Can have fun running wild
Playing the part of a monkey in a play!

BBC News 23/06/06: A seven-year-old black boy has been withdrawn from a school play by his mother after he was cast as a monkey. Myles Rees was cast as a monkey, alongside one other black pupil and three white boys. Mrs Rees, 39, made an official complaint to the school, saying: "Everyone is aware of the racist connotations of asking a black pupil to play a monkey." The school said the pupils chose the parts they wanted, but a meeting between Mrs Rees and head teacher Helen Heap has failed to resolve the row. Read more about it here

It's a pity isn't it, how sometimes our actions perpetuate that very thing we wish to see abolished? There were 3 white boys who were playing monkeys... perhaps it was indeed a case of some kids choosing a 'fun' part but Mrs Rees has now managed to sow the seed in her son that he is black and therefore different and should be aware of this difference in what ever he does in future!


  1. i think the whole concept of "racism' and it's existence is passed on through generations - this is just an example how it could be done in a subtle way to create an irreversible perception in a kid's mind who probably wasn't aware of it before.

  2. @qbit - they say a burnt child fears the fire...this could be a case of getting oversensitive to an issue...and perhaps it is bound to happen atleast in some cases. Only when people feel secure enough will they be able to rationally differentiate what is racism from what is not.