Racism against a young boy...

by melissa on October 21, 2015 - 10:57pm

On June 11, 2014, a journalist published an article entitled "Torrence Collier, 11, says he faces racism, extreme bullying in Westport" that was published on the CBC News. The author demonstrates how much children can be cruel against somebody else. A little boy, Torrence Collier, is victim of racism and bullying. The Collier's family has recently moved back in Westport from Saskatchewan. In his new school and in his village, Torrence is the only black child on a population of 200. He is in grade 5 and he already feels rejection. He does not understand why nobody loves him. After so much bullying, he is questioning himself. He thinks it is his fault that everybody hates him. Everyday, Torrence is receiving comments against his skin color. He does not want to go to school anymore because he feels horrible about himself; he even wants to die because he cannot deal with this anymore. Her mother spoke to the director about how other children are treating her child.  After her discussion with the director, Torrence needs to be supervising all daylong; he even has his own washroom. He feels like he was in prison. Finally, in order to make other students aware of this problem, the school put some presentation on anti-bullying and on diversity to sensitize children in school.

In response to the CBC news article, there are no negative points on the article. Everything is well explain and very clear. In my opinion, I believe that Torrence is really victim of racism because he is the only black child on a population of 200. It is unbelievable that some children are doing such things only because of a difference in color. In elementary school, children are not sufficiently educated on the subject of difference in skin color. For many of these students, it is the first time that they see people with a different skin color; it is normal for them to be surprised and to ask questions. In the article "Children are not colorblind: How young children do they learn race" by Erin N. Winkler, it shows how it is important to talk about physical traits with child because if parents are not talking about this subject, they will say things that might hurt somebody without wanted. This is the role of the parents and teachers sometimes to talk about race and racism, because, as Winkler says in his article, avoiding the subject will not make racism disappear.  If one day, parents are hearing racist comments against something or somebody from their child, they need to react automatically and tell them that it is wrong to say comments like this because it can hurts people.

 

(2014, June 11). Torrence Collier, 11, says he faces racism, extreme bullying in Westport. CBC News. Retrieved October 19, 2015 from http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/newfoundland-labrador/torrence-collier-11-says-he-faces-racism-extreme-bullying-in-westport-1.2671343

 

 

 

 

 

Comments

The title of this post captivated my attention because it involves children. As a skating coach, I interact with young children several times per week. I am passionate about teaching them and I strive to help them attain their goals. Unfortunately, bullying can get in the way of attaining these goals, like in the case of Torrence in this article. As mentioned in the summary of the article by CBC news, even young children in elementary school may be subject to racism. This information was not new to me since we spent several classes discussing and learning about racism amongst children. I agree with this post’s argument that children need to be informed about different skin colours in order to reduce the potential for racist comments or behaviours. Children who simply do not know better make racist comments and actions. In class, we also learned about different games to play to help children understand the concept of diversity amongst humans. I think that these could be helpful when trying to explain to children about race. I would find it interesting to learn more suggestions on how to help elementary students understand racism.

Race and Gender
I would like to start by saying that the title really catches the attention of the reader. The opinion was clearly explained and was easy to understand. The fact that children start getting bullied or start discriminating their peers because of their race at such a young age is quite shocking. The young boy, Torrence Collier, could also not only be bullied because of his race but also because he is not “man” enough; the other students might think that he does not act as a man, that he is a weakling. The concept of the “man box” explains this phenomenon. In the society, men should be tough, muscular and stoic. If a man does not have these characteristics; he gets punished. Children are also taught from a very young age to act like men and are constantly reminded to so by their surroundings, even their parents. In Torrence’s case he might also me skinny, short or emotional and that could have pushed other students to start bullying him. Some other student also probably felt as if they could be victims, because they did not have the characteristic to be a man, and so they chose someone else who would be the victim instead. These actions are not only seen in schools with a group of people of the same age. In movies, the protagonist or hero is always tough and emotionless and if he is not he gets bullied. The toys for children also promote this; the figurines are strong, armed and give the image of a feared and dangerous person. From a very young age children, especially boys, are taught that they should grow into people that never gets scared, is feared, does not show any emotions and that if they do not act that way, there will be consequences.
If you want more information about the man box, here is an interesting article:
-http://www.wps.colostate.edu/men-and-masculinities

Your post is really interesting and it is nice to shed some light on what is going on around this world. It caught my attention how racism still exist and it shouldn't even exist. We should all work towards ending racism once in for all. As you were mentioning on your post, Torrence Collier who is eleven years old boy and have been facing struggles throughout his early stages of life. Torrence and any other individuals should never be treated any differently. I personally believe that it can impact their lives mentally and physically. This young boy Torrence was going to commit suicide thinking he shouldn't live anymore because of his skin colour. Should people be treated any different based on their skin colour? Many individuals have been mentally and physically affected because racism and bullying. It has led to many tragic event including suicides. We can possibly solve this dilemma by using the deontological approach. Deontology approach is described as following rules, if you are following them you are ethical and if your not then you are considered unethical. It focuses on the nature of actions. According to Kant’s theory you must follow the universal law. All the teachers should be aware of bullying and racism. They should educate students to never bully and to respect everyone equally. Governments should design new programs to overcome racism and educate the young population on the importance of treating every skin colour with equal respect. Furthermore, I believe that to overcome this issue the parents have to also aid in educating their children as well. If the parents and the schools make these small changes , we can hope for a positive outcome. Racism is happening everywhere in the world and has impacted the life of many. We all want the same thing: a better life for all the kids and children, and a racism-free future for everyone!