Johan Hjelm on Sun, 6 Jun 1999 16:34:06 +0200 (CEST)

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Re: <nettime> One black MP for all Europe (fwd)

Worthy as his cause may be, it is only fair that he represents Britain,
the only country in Europe with significant Asian or black minorities.

But what worries me is the fact that you even find it necessary to point
out that he is black (coming from Goa, wouldn't he be Asian though? Kind
of beige?). This leads to dangerous crosswirings of genetics and society
- an americanism that we should try to keep out of the European debate. 

In my view, the skin colour does not make for any kind of competence in
representing others. Minorities in Europe, be they basque, turkish or
sami, are not "couloured" in the same way as American minorities. Yet
they need to have a voice. 

If capacity for representation is related to the constituency and the
competency of the individual, we will have a far better democracy than
if someone is qualified because they have a certain sex, colour or hair
style. Positive discrimination only enhances negative discrimination and
that is of course exactly what he is campaigning against. 
Minority is a way of life, not an inherited trait. If you put a naked
Serb next to a naked Kosovan, you'll be hard put to tell which is which.
Try to be colourblind. You will see clearer. 




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