Sons of Malcolm
On the way to work walking down to the tube platform at farringdon station this morning, I noticed 15metres ahead of me a working class white man in his thirties (with his shorter white side kick who just gawps and smiles throughout) being a bit loud to someone on the bench, I checked the face of the guy on the bench (South Asian) and he was smiling and kind of laughing, but as I took a few more steps towards them it was clear that the white guy was being abusive so I continue to walk up and see that the guy on the bench is with his partner/wife (South Asian sister in a hijab) and I stand right in in between the white racist and the couple on the bench with both being a few yards away from me. This immediately stops the racist being abusive to the couple and he starts abusing me, (ALL of this happens within 10secs), I just stand there emotionless staring at him, a train comes and he goads me to come into the train: "don't be a f****g hero, come on the train if you want some" etc. he shows spit dripping of his tongue to me and the train starts to pull away, I continue to stare at him until he is out of sight. I speak to the couple, the white racist basically just came up to them out of the blue and started abusing them.
We exchanged a few words and I got on the train and tried to read my James Baldwin book on racism and homphobia, but was and still am overwhelmed terribly with feelings of anger and upset because:
1, its 2015 and in central london in broad daylight in a public place a racist can abuse three non-white people,
2, he can do so without anyone else intervening (there was a female white dread on the next bench who obviously didnt like the abuse but said nothing), the platform tube staff member didn't even notice,
3, I feel terrible that the couple had to endure that abuse and dealt with it as best they could, but the way they did left me feeling very disempowered, and
4, that I did not administer any immediate justice. Despite this, I suppose I did the best I could, intervened, showed that we can literally stand together and face off racists, but.
Fact is, we always need to be self defensive combat ready and prepare for that. These racists understand only one language, and I am not advocating violence, but if I had verbally pushed him back it would have gone to a physical situation within seconds, and what would have been the best antidote for scumbags like that is to spend a few weeks in hospital to reflect on their abusive behaviour. This is not for everyone, but those who can should prepare accordingly, and In this framework of self defence I don't agree with killing people unless your life is in danger and it was necessity, I do remember the pertinent words of Malcolm X: "our religion teaches us to be intelligent. Be peaceful, be courteous, obey the law, respect everyone; but if someone lays a hand on you, send him to the cemetery.That's a good religion."
Anyway, I would like to take this opportunity to mention the Islamophobia Awards 2015, which is organised by the Islamic Human Rights Commission who are the vanguard anti-racist advocacy organisation from the Muslim community who have done and continue to do excellent work around anti-Muslim racism/Islamophobia. This event is a well organised wonderful evening of jokes, comedy, and poking fun at anti-Muslim racism and those who promote it, with our special guest Aamer Rahman performing live this year.
Not only do we need to do the street and community stuff, but also need organisations like this to do the serious work on all levels to combat our enemy and empower our peoples, and also celebrate and enjoy our solidarity and we need to gather together, laugh and eat good food to deal with the nonsense we go through here in the 'west' and that which our peoples go through in the Homelands.