Cristine Khan – On Anti-Blackness in the Indo-Caribbean Community

Cristine Khan wrote a recent piece in Medium titled “On Anti-Blackness in the Indo-Caribbean Community”

In light of all the current action happening around the heinous murders of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and many others, it is more pressing now than ever that all communities of color hold themselves accountable in supporting black communities. We must all recognize and challenge anti-black sentiment rampant in immigrant communities. As a second-generation American who grew up in a largely Indo-Guyanese household, and as a current educator and researcher on migration and the Indo-Caribbean community, I want to share my perspective on anti-blackness in this community in hopes of creating more accountable, socially-conscious action to stand in solidarity and support black people in this moment and beyond.

When I was growing up in Hollis, Queens, my late-grandpa used to tell my cousins and me to avoid the apartment building at the corner of the block because of the “black kids.” To this day, everyone laughs at how when I was about seven-years-old, after being angry at my sister, I hid her school clothes in the front garden and blamed it on the black kids. I remember feeling so guilty for lying, but okay with the fact that I blamed it on the kids who were already so degraded in my family’s eyes. I did not realize how this experience shaped me until much later when I was given the tools of critical thought to reflect on this.

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