Rachel Kolisi on racism & the Black Lives Matter movement – ‘Of course white privilege exists’

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Rachel Kolisi has spoken up against racism.
Image: Rachel Kolisi via Instagram

Rachel Kolisi says one of the first steps to do away with racism in society is to acknowledge white privilege.

She had the conversation via Instagram on Monday when she shared her views on racism, the Black Lives Matter movement and the ongoing anti-racism protests around the world.

This is in the wake of the recent killing of African American George Floyd at the hands of a white police officer.

Rachel says racism is a reality for many black South Africans, and the privileged need to admit it exists or things will never change.

“If you can’t come to terms with this and admit this is the situation in SA, you will keep listening to stuff like this. You’ve got to check yourself because this is everyday life and people talk like white privilege doesn’t exist. Of course it exists.”

She shared a personal example of how she found employment as a waiter without any experience while a black girl who was more qualified missed out on the opportunity.

Rachel is married to Springbok captain Siya Kolisi, who is black. They have mixed race children, who she says she has had to defend from racists.

Since the start of the lock down, Rachel has been travelling to  townships through the Kolisi Foundation, delivering food parcels for those hardest hit by the lock down. She says this experience opened her more to the injustices faced by black South Africans.

“We’ve been going to townships for a number of weeks, and this has been very eye-opening and very educational. There is this whole idea that you cannot go to a township because it is dangerous.

“If you don’t go, you are never going to understand the quality of living that some people have in this country.”

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