Idk if my followers know the context so:
The Zwarte Piet discussion has been going on for a long time but it feels like this year it’s been dragged into the mainstream more and more (Zwarte Piet = part of our winter holiday celebrations, white peeps dressing up in a blackface caricature, an old white men brings a boat full of people dressed as black slaves into the Netherlands… it’s truly awful and people refuse to put Piet into context and acknowledge his racist apparition).
Dutch people are apparently so threatened by the idea of having to confront their own racism that they are fighting tooth and nail to keep Piet (with many gems such as: seeing a black caricature in this obvious Golliwog-like caricature makes you racist!). Even the UN got in though people misunderstand this: the Netherlands asked the UN to evaluate the Sinterklaas festivities because we want to put it on a list of ‘cultural heritage’. One researcher of the UN (Verene Shepherd, a black woman who is now being called horrible racist and misogynist slurs by people here) came right out and said she felt Piet is racist. A few weeks ago there was a meet up at the Malieveld above in which people protested against… what exactly? They protested against the idea of having to change one aspect of their holiday.
The woman in the photo above was there as well protesting the UN. She wasn’t there for Piet, she protested the UN paying so much attention to a smaller issue like Zwarte Piet while they are completely ignoring the massacres of Papuan people by the Indonesian government.
Because she is black, and because she was holding a flag (the flag of Papua New Guinea) people assumed that she was there to protest against Piet. People (in blackface as you can see) started crowding around her, shouting abuse at her, and eventually physically attacking her.
The photographer of the picture above wanted to remain neutral but eventually had to start pulling people off of her.
Because nothing says “the tradition we’re fighting for is not racist at all” like violently attacking a black woman who wasn’t even protesting against you.