The interview with Meghan Markle by Oprah Winfrey constantly reminded us that Britain enjoyed racism in all facets of its society. By extension, Britain is present in Jamaica in her elite white economic entrenched population as well as far-flung countries – Australia, Cayman Islands, Bermuda, South Africa, and even Kenya. So, to hear that the royal firm was racist to a beautiful mixed-race woman whose presence as the wife of a Prince made life hell for her is nothing to be bewildered about.
Britain has enjoyed and orchestrated racism towards black people ever since she sent her explorers and armed criminals as buccaneers into Africa, India and the Caribbean. As the richest beneficiary of slavery and the slave trade, Britain became an institution for racism. While America created racism on its shores and within her country, Britain created racism around the world, again, in Africa and the Caribbean, Australia, New Zealand and other colonized nations.
In its institutions and lived culture, Britain continues to discriminate against those who it sees as the Other. In fact, the Other was created by her Cultural Theorists from the Birmingham School.
In the 1960s, its working class created terrorist groups that made life mentally hell for black immigrants from the Caribbean. To make matters worse, they discriminated against a people of different color in housing, education and social amenities. As my cousin who lived in London relates, “Very few children of immigrants, so much that only a handful ever went to university in the 1960s. Britain preferred to have West Indians as beggars on the street or servants to white people in low-paying jobs.
During the 1960s and 1970s, in fact, up to the 1980s, Britain refused to hand over power to the people it had ruled for centuries. It supported apartheid in South Africa and it financially supported other European colonisers such as Portugal in Angola, Mozambique and Guinea Bissau.
We forget that only a few years ago South Africa received independence. While South African whites might have been of Non-British Stock, we must never forget that most white wealth in South Africa is in the hands of English whites. Britain only gave Zimbabwe independence in 1980 and that of the Bahamas was in 1973; Grenada, 1974 and Antigua, 1981. Britain refused to grant the Cayman Islands, Turks Islands and many more islands independence. She continues to enslave these countries in more ways than one controlling and stealing the wealth in the form of offshore deposits which fuel Britain’s coffer with foreign exchange, the source of money now loaned to many desperate ex territories.
But Britain has always been cunning, she kept the Commonwealth having instituted constitutions that maintained de jure racial control, having the Queen as head of the Commonwealth and making appeals at the highest court level reside in the British Court of Appeals. She has kept us in our places while denying the narrative of racism. While the black population languished in desperation for agricultural land, housing stock, and quality green space, the Jamaican ethnic white minority controlled the best farmlands and by virtue of hegemony, the major institutions which they chair. In modern days, for example, Jamaica’s National Gallery, Heritage Trust, among others, have never seen a black face as chairman or managing director. What an insult to black people!!! It is, therefore, not a surprise that the royal family has denied the son of Prince Harry nobility as Prince, only because his mother is black.
Well, the world knows now, as one of Britain’s heir in the form of Prince Harry has confirmed the racist DNA of the British royal family and by extension the British people.
As a person of color, it is my hope that black people must not forget that our lot today was shaped by Britain’s and other white European’s policies, attitudes and actions for centuries.
It is time for a strong number of black leaders to disconnect with Britain, such as the recognition of the Queen as head of the Commonwealth or as head of the Anglican church and head of the courts.
How much do we need to be reminded of a European stock of people thinking of themselves as God-given rulers above black people who despise and racially insult a member of their ruling circle? That group of people, the British, has continued to demonstrate prejudice and discrimination towards anything black!!!!!!!
Britain has no intention of embracing new thoughts, new relationships despite the digital age. Her relishing history of privilege, exploitation and dominance will continue to let her racist DNA triumph over good moral and international humanity. Sadly, we forget that these behavior and actions have also translated into the privilege and class/race power culture and economic reach of her sons in Jamaica.