The problem is THE word that people say. And how they say it. And from which perspective the image has being seen.
Yesterday, the country went to the streets askinf for the Impeachment, for the end of the corruption, military intervention, etc etc etc. I stayed at home watching the brazilian version of The Voice Kids. And it was beautiful. While people were protesting, I’ve seen some stuff on Facebook… then, I saw this pic:
And about it, a thousand of words has been said, like:
- She (the nanny) is doing only her job (and this information was used as a kind of argumentation by the couple in the photo);
- The black woman is kept as a slave by the white people.
- The nanny is working and she is going to a protest lead by the right party, something that can be against her own ideology;
- “Rei do Mate” (or Mate’s King, a food chain) in Rio de Janeiro. Someday they will create “Barbecue King” in Bahia. (Mate, a kind of tea and Barbecue are things typically consumed in the South area of Brazil. In Bahia, the typical food is Acarajé, nothing to do with Barbecue. In my opinion, this is the BEST comment, just because it’s funny).
The thing is, the photo was taken during a protest where the most part of the people support the right party. The picture shows a white couple that has a black woman as their nanny; and the nanny is working on a Sunday. But… the Internet does not forgive anyone. People are posting huge texts speaking up for the nanny, speaking up for the couple, supporting one side and supporting the other side.
The only person who can say whether she’s happy or not, is the nanny.The only one who can say if she is acting against her own ideology, like going to a protest with the bosses, is the nanny. If a person consider himself against the smoking but this same person works for a company that produces cigarretes because this is the only job he could find in this very moment, his bosses deserve being crucified?
I know this example is completely different and can’t be compared to what happened to the woman portrayed in the photo; the black woman is underrated in labour market. And the fact of being black makes it much more complicated. I know it very very well. But las week I watched a video where the girl says something like “if you are chatting with a few people and someone makes a joke about (here, you think about some minority: ethnic, sexual or social) and if between these people, there are someone from this “minority”, the only person who can say if it was a bad joke, if any harm was caused, is the person who belongs to this “minority”. But we can always be supportive when such a thing happens, in other words, we can not close our eyes, but we can not raise our weapons if we don’t know how the person supposedly offended is feeling.
We don’t know if the nanny was offended by the actions of her bosses. Maybe so. Maybe no. Until now, she hasn’t said a word. And probably, will not say. This is why there are so many people being supportive. Unfortunately, our society is racist and misogynist. And things doesn’t get better, because Brazil has many troubles with a big economical crisis. So, unfortunately, we have to take the “this is what we have for today, because tomorrow, we don’t know if we are going to have the same chance” (related to job opportunities, school, food…).
In my opinion, it’s great when we have causes to support. Talk about it is very healthy and it’s amazing when we can learn new things with discussions, if we keep mind and heart open. The picture should be used as a starting point for biggest speeches like: what can we do to improve the women’s position in labour market? How can we improve our country? How can we live as a society, providing equal oportunities? Why someone takes kids and dogs to a protest, a place with so much noise, when kids and dogs have very sensible hearing? But healthy conversation are very rare nowadays while the hate speechs and virtual lynching are more commom.
The internet became big hustings. Judges and attorney from social networks. A big place for attacks and defenses, where, Power Point slides are shows, one after another, for the people express their opinion. But only for two or three days. Tomorrow, there will be a different slide. And nobody will remember of the slide from Yesterday, the Carnival one.
(The photo above is anothe example of what happened to the people on the first photo of this post. This family, dressed as Aladdin, Jasmine and Abu as acused of racism because they dressed their addopted son (who is black) as Abu, a monkey – therm usually used to offend black people).