On January 15 2015, SIB/DUNSA’s first lecture of the new year was held in CREA. Its topic: police brutality and ethnic profiling after segregation in the United States of America.
Our two speakers of the evening were Trouw-journalist Sybilla Claus and Quinsy Gario, who is mostly known for his activism concerning the Black Pete-issue (Zwarte Piet). Mrs Claus spoke first, elaborating on the history of segregation in the USA. She talked about the history of the USA in general, where she mentioned that black versus white has always been an issue, with for example Mexico’s territory decreasing incredibly, retreating from California and Texas to its current shape. She also talked about the segregation in the sixties and problems during those years, by showing us many examples and quoting books, of which one was Assata Shakur’s. Mrs Claus also mentioned current issues, by showing the army-like gear of American police officers, and ended her talk with the statement that in fifty years there would be a New America, where whites would be a minority and latinos would be the new majority.
Quinsy Gario dismantled the subject and talked about the three different aspects: segregation, police brutality and ethnic profiling. He mentioned some very unrealistic facts concerning American jurisdiction, and explained how the black people in the USA only retaliated on the police forces. He also talked about this issue in Europe, with London and Paris, where ethnic minorities got in fights with the police as well. Mister Gario also focused on the importance of what he called ‘respectability politics’ which influence not only the black people in the USA today, but everyone around the world. At the end of his talk, there was room for discussion and we had some international students, who were able to tell us about education on racism in American schools. It was a very interesting night!