growing up with racism

Taslima Patel with her youngest child, Ayaan.

BURGERSFORT – With Anti-Racism Week upon us, Steelburger/Lydenburg News spoke to two mothers from different ethnic groups on how they educate their children about other cultures; if their children know what racism is and how it affects them.

Taslima Patel is a mother of three, and said, “My children do not know what racism is. I teach them to be friendly and to treat everyone equally because they are human and have feelings just like we do. They have friends from other ethnic groups at school and in our neighbourhood. We teach them to treat others the way we would like to be treated. There is no racism in our family. I don’t want them to know what it is because it’s a very big issue, and can confuse them at this age, I wouldn’t like them to learn it from anywhere else either.”

Dikeledi Makalapetlo is also a mother of three. She said her children do not know what racism is and that she does not teach them about it. “At school they have friends of other cultures and that’s fine with me. Even if they decide to marry someone of a different race one day, I will be fine with it. In our house we teach them to be kind to everyone. We even encourage them to learn Afrikaans,” said Makalapetlo.

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