Thought #1 - We’re all the same, remember?



Hi guys!! How are you?


Now, here in Angola – everything is doing fine .


First of all, I would like to thank you all for having believed in our idea with so much love! I have seen shares in Facebook and received some special messages. Thank you! Since the beginning, that was our purpose, to have all of you travelling with us and awaking for serious discussions to think twice which are the fundamentals to change the route of the society we live.


We are learning a lot. In fact, I think that I am starting now to learn about life… Furthermore I’m also learning about editing videos and drying my clothes on the window.


Due to that, Fe and I concluded that only share our experiences could be not enough, reason why we decided also to share our thoughts, concerns, questions and all that give us confidence that we made the right choice. So, here I am .


Since our arrival we passed through four countries – South Africa, Botswana and Namibia. Now we are in Angola. We crossed borders walking calmly… which is another surprise for me, as I’ve always imagined that I would have to deviate from crocodiles and sleep in the forest. This is the influence of soap operas…


We had amazing experiences in each place, but nothing so valuable as having the opportunity to see and understand the history of people, man and world.


I am saying this, because during the last days I had the chance to feel the contrasts that we were aiming to find. And believe me, it made a lot of things clearer.


One of them is the Apartheid. Why my history classes at school didn’t take a whole year to talk about this? Why I don’t remember having studied this issue during my graduation in Law and why nobody yelled to me the details of how this happened?


I still don’t understand how some people thought that they had the right to “discover” a new land and simply take it for them, ignoring the people that used to live there, their culture and history.


If it wasn’t enough to decree unilaterally a new moral, social and religious order, they were still able to considerer their selves superior than others, up to the point of avoiding you to go to the same places they go. And in order to not be so cruel, when they expelled you from your own home, they built another whole city – Township – to you and your friends. Quite far from the City Centre, of course… where your presence was not very welcome.


You and your friends couldn’t use the same bathroom they used; neither go to the same bars. You couldn’t even forget about it, as there were warnings all around.


Oh, I forgot to say:

You and your friends are black. They are white.

And?!?!?


Well… I don’t know who was the unhappy person that, so meaningless, created the idea of segregation to give himself a different value. I only know that it was more than one…

considering that world’s history shows us that it happened – and still happens – frequently in many places. Black, Jew, Gipsy, Indigenous, Homosexuals… a big list. It is almost like as if we had to be lucky before we were born, to avoid difficulties and retaliations that sometimes we can’t even know where It comes from.


We also live this in Brazil. The segregation today seems to be hidden and the ones aware of it are those who decided to stand up from the couch and seek for more answers that cannot be given by the TV. During the long trips, Fe and I watched a documentary about the history of our country. It calls Brazil: An Inconvenient History.


In this moment of so much identifications and differences, it was very important to remember our history. We are the biggest slavery country in the world. During the colonization, were imported more than four million slaves from Africa. Yes, imported. As they were treated – and transported – as goods and not as persons. We just didn’t have a territory racial segregation – like in the Apartheid – because Brazil really needed to increase its population. And so the settlers used to get together with indigenous and slave women, giving birth to children that practically were never recognized as legitimate. That is why we are so mixed .


Some people say that African culture is stronger and more alive in Brazil than in Africa, where the process of colonization just swallowed the history and custom of the people who used to own everything. Even though, it seems that this past is still barely reminded when discussions about social problems come up.


I think that everybody knows that our country was born African. But do we really know how this history was built and how our origins – substantially black and slave – were definitely important to the society we live today?


This question I specially do for those who do not question their selves and accept anything as an incontestable true. For those who sometimes forget that they are so Brazilians, so Africans, so human beings as any one of us, is worth reminding that they are part of all and co-responsible for the course of life. This means that we all should work to assure that everybody can have opportunities to choose and that poverty and inequality will be not imposed anymore, as occur today.


In this sense, I share with you a quote of the book Reflections on Intolerance, of Rao V. B. J. Chelikani, in which the author says “Every human being must question situations with fundamental injustice to himself and to others and do his best to fix it. Avoiding conflicts in situations like that is not tolerance, but complicity.” (free translation)


I don’t want do be accomplice with that. If I wanted, maybe I wouldn’t be suffering from Angola’s high temperature and missing my mom’s latté, just to seek for answers that will help me to improve my country.


But here I am. And from here I can see that we are all capable of causing a domino effect. Each action and each word can be the starting point for huge movements. Share our beliefs and invite even more people to discover themselves as part of this all. By the end, we are all the same, just a different address.


Gabi.