Not you, you’re from the Caribbean

Unknown (1)Johanne Rahaman,
Miami, FL.

I am half black, half Indian, from the Trinidad, with an obvious Caribbean accent, and while I enjoy adding my bit to the diversity of America, it’s also a curse, because I have often in the past heard people make derogatory comments about African-Americans in my presence. They have referred to them by the n-word, then looked over at me and say, “but not you, you’re not black. You’re from the Caribbean”. This used to infuriate me so much but I was undocumented at that time, so I never said anything, but I always felt ashamed for getting a pass. Now that I am a citizen, and I consider myself proud to be labeled African-American, no one dares to say that in my presence. I would tell them off, and I even tell off Caribbean people who think that they can use that pass as some kind of superiority. I stand up for African-American any chance I get. I am a photographer, and most of my work is done in the marginalized African-American and Haitian communities of Miami, where I use my talent to spotlight the faces of the people of marginalized communities for their resilience, their talent, the survival, their beauty.

 

Not you, you’re from the Caribbean

Unknown (1)Johanne Rahaman,
Miami, FL.

I am half black, half Indian, from the Trinidad, with an obvious Caribbean accent, and while I enjoy adding my bit to the diversity of America, it’s also a curse, because I have often in the past heard people make derogatory comments about African-Americans in my presence. They have referred to them by the n-word, then looked over at me and say, “but not you, you’re not black. You’re from the Caribbean”. This used to infuriate me so much but I was undocumented at that time, so I never said anything, but I always felt ashamed for getting a pass. Now that I am a citizen, and I consider myself proud to be labeled African-American, no one dares to say that in my presence. I would tell them off, and I even tell off Caribbean people who think that they can use that pass as some kind of superiority. I stand up for African-American any chance I get. I am a photographer, and most of my work is done in the marginalized African-American and Haitian communities of Miami, where I use my talent to spotlight the faces of the people of marginalized communities for their resilience, their talent, the survival, their beauty.

Not you, you’re from the Caribbean

Unknown (1)Johanne Rahaman,
Miami, FL.

I am half black, half Indian, from the Trinidad, with an obvious Caribbean accent, and while I enjoy adding my bit to the diversity of America, it’s also a curse, because I have often in the past heard people make derogatory comments about African-Americans in my presence. They have referred to them by the n-word, then looked over at me and say, “but not you, you’re not black. You’re from the Caribbean”. This used to infuriate me so much but I was undocumented at that time, so I never said anything, but I always felt ashamed for getting a pass. Now that I am a citizen, and I consider myself proud to be labeled African-American, no one dares to say that in my presence. I would tell them off, and I even tell off Caribbean people who think that they can use that pass as some kind of superiority. I stand up for African-American any chance I get. I am a photographer, and most of my work is done in the marginalized African-American and Haitian communities of Miami, where I use my talent to spotlight the faces of the people of marginalized communities for their resilience, their talent, the survival, their beauty.

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