I might not be the funniest, most intelligent or most ambitious person in a group but I can claim that I am probably the most reflective. I analyse and mull over things to the extreme. And then when I get tired of doing that I’ll go and grab a cup of tea and do it some more. I am also the person in the middle of the venn diagram. I can relate to a very wide variety of people.
I have friends who have never been to university and friends who went to Oxbridge and are now working in the city. I get on with both equally. Both sets of friends are completely different but what they have in common is the idea that I think along similar lines to them, which isn’t always the truth. It’s in these situations that I have been privy to some of the most shocking revelations. Things that I had to make sure I had heard correctly when said to me.
One such situation was when I was doing some charity work. Me and my friend got talking to the owner of a dessert parlour (we are all Asian- this is relevant to the story) and when the organiser saw us all talking there was a frosty look. I didn’t quite understand but at the breakfast the next morning things were explained crystalline to me. “All the Asians here have lots of money…If lots of Arab people came to the UK and started being richer than the UK citizens you wouldn’t like it would you?”
I disguised my shock well and later questioned some of the other charity workers. “When you see a rich Asian in the UK do you mind it?” They were all surprised by my question and all said no not at all, “if they work for it, it’s fine”. But by not reacting to the organisers comments I heard their true point of view and it made me think.
I’m not white British but I would say that I was British (with Pakistani and Kenyan heritage).But if I earn more money that a white British person am I doing something wrong?! I know that the answer is no, but I wonder how many other people think like that… Also quite worryingly, when I hear British Asians talk about “all the Polish workers who are stealing our jobs” I always feel alarmed because it wasn’t so long ago that people were talking about “all the Indian workers”!
Anyway, I’ll leave you to watch this powerful video which sums up nicely how I feel about this issue. Happy viewing!