I am a little lost with things going on here in this small country. Now we do have a history that is not entirely fair to all kinds of people. But face the fact that in most countries history has stories of wrong doing. Why am I starting a rant like that, well because of the different thinking of many people.
Now you still do not know what it is I am talking about. Let me get started then. It is a tradition for as long as I can remember and so does my parents and even granny. A tradition held every year at December 5th. A saint walking the streets and roof tops on a white horse. Interested, it is our story of Sinterklaas (sɪnt ‘nikola’s), the good holy man or for short, The sint (saint). It is a is a big happening with that saint steaming in on a steamboat from Spain. Docking in a harbour and have a parade with his black Pete, 300 and this year even 700 dancing and doing acrobatics. Scattering candy through the sky for kids to catch. Yeah he is coming half way down November and goes back on the 6h of December after delivering al his presents to the children.
Now I am sure you have noticed one word in there that is causing all the commotion. Even the UN had something to say about it. As an elder I cannot understand that it is the people age 20 to 50 who are making the most commotion. And I mean the coloured amongst us. Why do I think they are wrong, well for one they came to this country knowing about our tradition and all that time they agreed and now they are against it because it is associated according to them with slavery. If we were that bad why come live in our country. Makes me angry to hear thing like that
Second it is a kids celebration, children of the youngest age who still believe this holy man exists. They don’t see a black Pete being used as a slave. They see a happy go lucky and smiling black Pete. Dancing, giving candy, doing tricks. Why would someone who has been living here half there lives decide to take that away from children. I have known coloured people from Africa and other countries who laughed and told some to have hired them because they o not need make-up.
Now a small community who feel they are being discriminated by that parade say that people should turn their back to the parade. Those painted black Pete and the our good holy man. Wait isn’t that the same as discriminating. Aren’t you discriminating a tradition a belief that has been around since well past 1800. And for years it has been celebrated in our old Dutch territories as well. Aruba, Bonaire and Suriname among others.
I say keep your hands of traditions for children. If you really hated it that much maybe you shouldn’t have come life in such an ugly country.
Apparently we are ugly people and am I a person who finds slavery as normal according to them. Well sorry if only they looked into it more instead just looking at heir own side of a coin.
More information can be found here: Sinterklaas
Note that nobody really knows any more where the celebrations originated from, somehow things have been lost and thus many different stories go around.. the one that stands for me it is a children’s celebration and that should stay. Cause age 4 has no idea what slavery is or even discrimination. They getting candy from a black person. That person sneaks in their homes Through the chimney (why they are black) to leave presents. How can a black person like that, be bad in their eyes It is a debate that is only getting worse. But what is the next thing we take away from children. Should they become like us old people. Bitter and miserable all the time. Complaining about everything that is not of this day and age. Like maybe Santa Claus. No They need a smile if only once or twice a year. After all we use those two to tell our children to be nice all year round or else they will get nothing.
I will be there on the 16th celebrating, having fun. Watching 700 of them Black Pete smile and cheer. And be cheered by the children waiting in the cold, hoping for a hand full of candy. And at night before put there shoe near the fire place (central heating system) with a carrot and straw for the horse or a nice drawing and the next morning run of to find chocolate or a small toy in it. Happy days. A few days not thinking of the bad but seeing children smile. Just a shame of all those police for the extra security.