- Posted July 5, 2014 by
Discussion about a dutch december tradition - UN advice: rethink Zwarte Piet figure
The role of figure Zwarte Piet (black Piet) should still be reconsidered, like UN advisers who last week in the Netherlands were investigating racism. The ongoing debate, since last year about Zwarte Piet is a good start for change, say the consultants.
One of them, Verene Shepherd, remains with the criticism they voiced last year. She still believes that change must come in the submissive stereotype role of Zwarte Piet.
"I think there should be a change in a respectful way," said Shepherd. The committee called Zwarte Piet a figure from the colonial past.
Of this past is given. Too little attention by the committee Because it looks at slavery, too little in high schools and universities, there is a lack of knowledge. "That feeds racism and intolerance," said Shepherd.
The consultants also believe that denial of racism is still a major problem in the Netherlands. "For a country that has a long tradition of tolerance, the silence about racism worrisome," said committee Mireille Fanon-Mendes.
It involves preliminary findings. The consultants will now create a report and come back with recommendations.
Shepherd also went briefly to the wave of criticism that she got over her last year. They then argued for the abolition of Sinterklaas and became fiercely criticized for.
At the press conference she called the letters she received from Dutch evidence of intolerance. "You have 'interesting' things said about me, showing that you have no idea who I am," said Shepherd.