WHITE PRIVILEGE – Let’s TALK about it. Sam Dey & Oscar Gonzalez Discuss.

A conversation about race between two entrepreneurs, sparked by a post on IGTV by entrepreneur and youtube personality Patrick Bet David where he said "...no, I don't believe in white privileges."

There’s not much I can say about this video. The conversation came impromptu, sparked from an Instagram story post from a clip I shared from Patrick Bet David, about white privilege. My friend Sam and I decided to record this and so it’s below.

The video is 2 hours long, and we didn’t stop talking the whole time. We both think that the conversation is important. We agree on some things, and disagree on others. But we had the conversation. That’s one of the things that is most important right now.

Who’s in it?

A Video Conversation About White Privilege, Racism, and Differences in the US vs the UK.

As you watch this, or if you finished watching this, if you believe like both Sam and I do that having these conversations is valuable, please share it out to your social media. Thank you!

Video Transcript

Oscar Gonzalez
Hey guys, Oscar here, Notagrouch. Notagrouch dot com what you’re about to watch is… if you want to watch this entirety, I recommend it. I invite you to it. It’s a conversation I have with a friend about the current state of affairs, how everything is going on. And I thought it was a conversation, a good conversation to share with you guys. We started talking about it. Within a minute or two, we realized, hey, maybe we should record this. I started. I record all my zoom calls, unless somebody asks not to be recorded. But what prompted this conversation was a post I made on Instagram. And I’ll show you in just a second. Actually, I’ll put it right here.

Patrick Bet David
White privilege. Let me get this straight. So that means somebody has privileges over me because they’re white? Really. You really believe that? I don’t buy that. Somebody that messaged me on facebook a couple of days ago saying, you know, because I posted the fact that I was in the military as somebody being Middle Eastern this person, I said, you know, I really feel bad I have to really, you know, understand what it must be like as a Middle Eastern man to be in the army and be judged and discriminated. And I do not understand how white privilege is, but I’m getting the better feeling about it lately. That I have some privileges you don’t have. Who made you decide that you have privileges that I don’t have? Oh, who are you to even say that like, seriously, let me get this straight. I came from a broken family. Parents got a divorce. Mom ran out of money went back to Iran. I joined the army. Okay. Yes, I didn’t have a you know, the fanciest life. We never lived in a house. I don’t know what it is to have money. But I decided to create privileges for myself. I like good food. So I want to work hard I created privileges for myself. I got in an industry of financial services day before 911 as a Middle Eastern man. And 911 was caused the last time I checked by folks from the Middle East. And that’s when I got into the industry. I didn’t say, Oh my gosh, let me not go sell stocks and money under management and insurance and annuities. Because I’m Middle Eastern. No, you don’t have privileges over me because you’re white. You don’t. You don’t have privileges over me because you’re Middle Eastern. Matter of fact, on the census, it says white, african american, Native American, Pacific Islander, Asian, there is nothing in there that says Middle Eastern, and I still don’t think you have privilege over me. I don’t want my kids to grow up thinking oh, they’re a Syrian Armenian. They’re not privileged, because they’re a Syrian Armenian. No, no. They’re privileged because they’re a Bet David living in America. That’s the greatest privilege you have. You’re living in America. What other kind of privilege do you want? So look, again, some people are not gonna like what I’m saying right now. But I’ll give you this other part. If you really believe and allow other people to make you believe that they have a privilege over you. You’re undermining your own talents. And you’re undermining. If you believe in a man upstairs, God, you’re undermining the man that created you or the parents that raised you. I’m not gonna do that. You don’t have any privileges over me. If I outwork you, if I read more books than you, if I improve myself, if I get the right strategies, if I’m able to last a long time, because I have stamina and I don’t fatigue early, I get to when that is my privilege, even though this guy looks like this, with a nose that’s pointing how many big noses you see like this, and ears like this. I am privileged you’re not privileged. So no, don’t feel bad for this privileged guy. I choose my privileges, not my skin color. My work ethic does my desire to learn does my desire to come up with better strategies and constantly last a long time. That’s how my privilege came my way. Not because my skin color. So again, no, I don’t believe in white privileges.

Oscar Gonzalez
Within a short amount of time I received a response from my friend, say, hey, let me give you a different perspective. And he he gave me a long, long written perspective answer to the video I had posted. And I thought, hey, you know this is worth talking about it instead of just going back and forth in a chat. So I gave him a quick response and I say, hey, do you want to have a quick zoom chat? He said yes. And after an hour or so back and forth, we figured out a good time we fired it off. When I first started talking to him, I turn off the recording because I know that topic was sensitive and I didn’t want him to be concerned with where what I would do with a recording or anything like that and we got to talking and after a few minutes we realized, hey, you know what he actually mentioned, if you want to record this, let’s do this. So, so I started the recording and, you know, kind of gave a quick introduction, which is what you’ll see now. And then we went ended up talking for, I think, either just under two hours or just over two hours, but I feel like it was a productive conversation. Fruitful, very nuanced, in some ways. And I think it’s a conversation that needs to be had by many people. When I see my Facebook feed, it is so inflammatory, so aggressive, people are fighting each other about what turns out to be most of the times a misunderstanding of meaningful words. And I think that you’ll find most people are like Sam and I, you know, somewhere pretty close to the middle. At least how that’s how I felt in the conversation. You’d be the judge. Without further ado, here it is.

Video transcript and closed captioning for the video by Otter.ai

Oscar Gonzalez
Kind of do a quick intro, just to say, you know, so Sam, we were just talking about this. And I haven’t talked to you in a couple years, but we met at Affiliate Summit, we have a lot of things in common and one of them is being an entrepreneur, digital marketing and stuff. So we kind of talked a little bit about that. But everywhere in the world right now we’re seeing some sort of unrest and division. I don’t know that’s maybe not maybe not the best terms to use. But there’s a lot of tension between people and I made a comment I posted a story today from the guy from Valutainment. Patrick bet David, very popular guy has like two and a half million subscribers. I really like the way he approaches things because I think he does in a very objective way. And so I posted that little story. By the way, if anybody else watching you can go see it. And then Sam was the only one that actually engaged in a conversation about it and said, Hey, The gist of the conversation in the video is that we, we kind of make what we make out of our lives as opposed to being subject to the outside circumstances. And Sam said, Hey, you know what there’s there’s a little bit more to it from his personal experience. So then we decided to have this zoom call and kind of just talk about it. So this is completely friendly. I’m not debating anybody I want to hear Sam side. And maybe Sam has some things that I don’t know about. And I can be I can learn about So Sam, why’d Why did you tell me? I actually, you know, if you want to say something, go ahead and we’ll get into it. We’ll talk about

Sam Dey
Yeah, yeah, thanks. Thanks Oscar as well for even you know, being open enough to have that chat. And I think that’s that’s the first thing as well as like, on both sides, because I’ve seen it done badly on both sides. It’s just being open and it’s not necessarily because someone says something that you don’t agree with is not necessarily let’s go and attack them because they’re racist or no lets actually, I believe in having conversation. And I don’t necessarily believe that I’m always right. Even though I’m what people told me, I’m stubborn, but I think I’m okay with getting things wrong sometimes. One of my mottos is, you know, to forgive myself for making mistakes and knowing that you’re not always going to be right. So, you know, firstly, thank you for having this chat and being open about it. I’ve watched Patrick’s channel as well, that value thing is valuetainment. I’m not like a huge, huge fan, not necessarily because the content isn’t great because the content is great. But it’s just it’s not necessarily a channel I watch a lot because I’ve only stumbled across it recently. Okay. I did watch that video he did about you know, just about the whole surrounding the whole George Floyd. Lives Matter.

Oscar Gonzalez
Yeah. Did you see the whiteboard? One that he did? just

Sam Dey
Totally Yeah. Yeah, yeah. And I would agree, I think that he’s very good. Just kind of just tell him the facts from his perspective anyway and not being too opinionated and just, you know, given that just seeing what’s going on and allowing you to come up with your own make your own mind up basically. Right. I think the instant Instagram posts that you put up, I agree with actually don’t disagree with it in any sense. I think that from where I came from, especially, I was definitely ruled out in a lot of a lot of sense. Not necessarily just because of my ethnicity, but more just because of my background where I came from. I’m from an area called Peckham in South London which is kind of very renowned basically for a lot of gang crime. I used to have to just to go to the to the store, I used to put my phone in my sock and walk to the store because often would you know you’ll get stopped on your way to the store and searched for your phone because in them they would like to steal people’s phones. And a lot of a lot of drugs being sold. And a lot of my peers that were neighbors and school friends didn’t make it out. So there’s there might be serving life sentences and so on and so forth. But I am not in that situation. I’m an entrepreneur built a very successful career, despite all of the odds. So I think you can be in a kind of a position of less privilege and work your way to, to privilege so to speak. But I think that there are there are other aspects that kind of shouldn’t be at play, if that makes sense. And one of those things is, how you’re how you’re profiled by by law enforcement. I think you should work for your right to be privileged you shouldn’t if you want to be a doctor, you should have to put in the hours to do that. But I don’t think that you should be more likely to be subject to kind of police brutality, if you are of a specific ethnicity and so I feel like kind of privilege is well shouldn’t be at play if that makes sense.

Oscar Gonzalez
Yeah, no, the I mean, what do you say makes sense and I completely agree there shouldn’t be any, any. Anything about you that you didn’t choose. That comes into play, right like, in this case you say ethnicity and then where you came from this skin skin color. There’s also gender there’s all kinds of things that we didn’t pick right. I didn’t pick to be born where I was born, you didn’t pick where you to be born where you were, and you didn’t pick to be black. I didn’t pick to be mixed. None of that. Right. So in my opinion, all that never should play into it. And of course, I I think I live that personally everywhere I go, you know, when I post things to help people. I don’t care who comes to me. What I put in when I determine if I’m going to help somebody, for example, in business, some sometimes I say, Hey, I’m going to help somebody and I tried to help somebody, like every couple months for free. Let me help you. Let me get your business up and running. Let me let’s get you a website, let’s do that. The only thing that I put into play there is whether they’re putting in the work. And at the end of the day, you know, I don’t really pay attention to the rest of it. But recently, I have an eye start looking well, you know, have I been contributing to this profiling, as you call it, or unbalanced opinion of certain people, whatever. And I can honestly say no, because most of the people I’ve helped have been women, and have, you know, many of them are. I don’t want to say the wrong thing, the wrong word, because I don’t intend it but some people call people of color over here, you know, that’s the word they use. So, I don’t mean to offend anybody, but that basically, that’s they’re a big part of those groups of people that I’ve helped. But then at the end of the day, I see that those are the people that come through and, and rise and I mean, you just made the example that you came from a bad neighborhood or bad area. And I’m I’m trying to make it a to make a bit of an analogy to what I would know here in the states and I’m guessing it’s something like East LA. I don’t know if you’re familiar with anything. Is that kind of like it like it’s a bad area to go into? You don’t go into unless you live there, right. That way?

Sam Dey
Yeah. Yeah. Yeah, definitely.

Oscar Gonzalez
So yeah. So we have areas like that here. But here, let me ask you this question. I mean,there’s kind of aI don’t know if it’s a catch 22 or what but you yourself to say, hey, coming from that area, I was profiled and I was maybe looked down upon until I rose above that, is that right?

Sam Dey 
I think I was definitely profiled then. And there’s a lot of people who I’m still friends with now. And they were profiled then. And I think I’m still profiling now. And I think there is that sense, especially when I work into certain when I walk into certain buildings, there’s a sense of, you know, what was he doing here? So, so definitely, in terms of like, being self employed, and being at the level that I am, that I am at, I sometimes work with high profile companies here in the UK in the US as well. And, you know, it’s there’s often that, why is he here kind of thing? Because I’m always the line naturally, I’m the one who I’m the odd one out, because there’s not a lot of people in higher management who look like me. So it’s kind of different for them as well as it’s a unique experience. So I think that yeah, that there is there is element, there is an element of good in terms of wacky Because it taught me that I have to grind and I have to have that grit. So when you have to have that grit to get out of that, you kind of continue that grit and that grind to remain out of that and also to kind of elevate and to go higher. So from from that perspective, I’m grateful for kind of being on the backfoot, so to speak. But at the same time, I feel like this just because I’m an entrepreneur, now, the stigma that sometimes attached to be in to be in black, especially when when I was when I was young, a few years younger, being young and black has a very negative stigma attached to it. Which often Yeah, it’s it’s, it’s really difficult and it can be very, very painful, especially when you know, you’ve fought so hard. So much, personally. Yeah. In my personal life, I fought so hard and then you get to a stage where you’re like, Okay, cool. I’ve got money now in a legitimate way. You know, I’ve, I’ve established myself, but you’re still, in certain instances being, you know, racially profiled or being spoken to a certain way because of how you look and stuff like that. So yeah…

Oscar Gonzalez
Is that area that you mentioned that you come come from predominantly black, or mixed? And it just, is it. So now, so how would you explain? I mean, I could be putting words in your mouth or something, but you feel like you are not safe there. So why would you feel like you’re not safe? I mean, you’re a person, you know, you’re black, and you that’s your home. And you still put your cell phone in your sock and you you know, you’re preparing for a situation. So why is that? Because you are you’re profiling a situation before you get into it saying, hey, this may happen because I’m in this area. So how would you know so What makes that okay? But if a white person did that they may be called racist. You see what I mean? Like, I want to know because there’s like, like in that in a video from Patrick he’s uh you know every we profile people every single day for different situations but there’s certain ones that seemed to be really bad and certain ones that are okay. And he uses the example of playing basketball I don’t know if you play basketball I don’t know if you play any sports but you know for basketball you want to tallest, most athletic person, right? So that’s a person is going to get picked for for soccer, you know, it may be odd to look at it, but if you have a Brazilian, you know, player, and then you have a Mexican player, you probably gonna pick the Brazilian one and it’s not a racist thing is they have a predominantly big reputation of being the best at soccer. So why would you feel that way when you go into your neighbor or when you were watching And around. If not, because of a profile situation, like you have decided, or you came to a conclusion whether somebody told you or it was personal experience, but this was a bad neighborhood and bad things could happen. So let me prepare for that. Right. So how do you get

Sam Dey 
100%? I mean, it’s a good is a good point that you that you make I was in, well, what we call secondary school here. I think it’s I think it’s I’m not sure if it’s high school in America. Yeah, I was out. I was between the ages of 11 and 16.

Oscar Gonzalez
Yeah, I think that we have middle middle and middle school and high school and sometimes they’re slightly different in different regions. But yeah, mostly middle and high school.

Sam Dey 
Yeah. So those are the those are the kind of the ages that we were that I was basically when I was when I felt the need to so now, well, that area is kind of being redone, and you know it’s a lot. It’s a big area, so to speak. And also just because I’m older as well, I, I wouldn’t really get, you know, targeted but you are kind of targeted when you’re that young, you’re targeted by people who are associated with gangs who might want you to join a gang. And I think the point in which I decided to put my stop putting my phone in my sock was because I was with my two other friends and I didn’t have a phone on me at the time. Luckily enough, I was my two other friends. And we did get stopped by a gang on the way what we we’ve been stopped countless times. But this particular time, we got stopped, and they were searching us for phones. And my friend had a phone and if one of us were to not give it, give it away, then we’re fearing the altercation might lead to something more so than in the loss

Oscar Gonzalez
the loss of the phone. Right?

Sam Dey
Yeah, so we kind of all decided look, we don’t want any trouble. Let’s put the phone in the sock. People probably won’t even check there to see if we’ve got one. You know, and I think it wasn’t necessarily being stopped by a particular group. So even though Yeah, the area was predominantly black, there were other races as well, there were Asians, there was white. So it was like, he doesn’t matter who would stop you. But anyone basically could, you know, could stop you it could become an argument, it could become a fight. It could become it anything. And I think one of the things, you know, a lot of people talk about systematic racism, and it’s a very, it’s a very controversial statement is a very controversial topic. But I think, like, I don’t have I mean, I have evidence I have evidence of some of the laws that are being passed here in in the UK, and some of the things that have happened kind of like historically of why I believe systematic racism is a thing. But I think even just the way some of the housing is Built in that area, isn’t it doesn’t facilitate, like healthy living. So I think yeah, I think you guys in America have like blocks. I think that’s what they call it. The blocks like the, you know, the in, in the UK we call it like council housing like this estate type person where you have basically loads of families that were talking like,

Oscar Gonzalez
Oh, sure, like you like,I thinkyou’re referring to like projects or something like that. Some people call it the project some people call. Yeah. Just Yes. Low Income Housing, I guess is that yeah, they have to tend to be very dense and like, you know, 10 stories, very, very small, close knit apartments. Is that what you mean?

Sam Dey 
Yeah. Oh, yeah. So stuff like that. And when you have an area like that, that’s everyone is living together. That there’s there’s a certain environment that that’s going to create, you know, the desert certain atmosphere that that’s going to create. And inevitably, the crime rates are just going to be higher, there’s going to be more more people on the streets doing things that they feel like they have to do in order to survive. So yeah, I feel like that doesn’t help. And one of the things that the UK have been doing for a long time is kind of like cut in cut in a funding for like youth projects, youth organizations, all of them have basically vanished. So all of the support that was being given to these areas have have been have been cut. So there’s no help now for those for those areas. And so, yeah, it’s going to be an areas, areas that are kind of more likely to be to have a higher crime rate. And yeah, that’s, I’m not sure if I answered the question there. But yeah…

Oscar Gonzalez
No, I was just curious. Yeah. How would you? Yeah, I mean, you did answer the question and you basically saying, it wasn’t necessarily a race issue. It was a It seems like it comes down to an economic issue where this area is bad, it doesn’t matter if it’s Asian or white, somebody may stop you to take advantage of you. And you happen to be a target at the time because of your age. And that makes sense because you are more vulnerable. You know, if you were stronger and taller, bigger or an adult, yeah, there’s still targets but you know, again, teenagers, it, you know, irrelevant of their skin color or anything, are obviously going to target somebody that’s weaker. Right? So that’s all that’s given. And we see, you know, I’m not I don’t want to say like, I know anything about London, because I don’t all I all I know from the UK and Europe. I mean, I’ve been to Europe, but not to the UK. But what I see from that, for example from the bad portrayal of things is to say that we see in the movie, you know, lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels and Trainspotting and stuff. So I see that there’s people in all kinds of ways that are in sort of in in that lifestyle of crime, and I don’t see it as a, as a racial issue, the thing that I am a little bit… I don’t want to say firm, but I’m pretty set on a way, at least in the states that, for example, this conversation that we’re having right now is because of all the tension that’s happening, and that tension comes from the murder of one guy at the hands of cops recently. And I saw a meme today, obviously, we’re both familiar doesn’t mean we live in a world of memes. But it wasn’t. It wasn’t a funny meme. But he said the way to stop racism is by and this is, I read the headline and the headline said, a man, a black man was killed by a black man, a black innocent man was killed by a racist white cop. And the meme was basically crossing out the colors and said, this is how you end racism because then if you read the headline Just says an innocent man was killed by a corrupt cop. Right? So a part of the problem I see is that the media is elevating things, but making issues that aren’t really there. And from day one, I wrote a little piece of medium where I said, this is not a racial issue. This is a corruption issue. Because I follow this… and it started growing a little bit in the UK. There’s some people doing it over there. But I know the laws are very different in regards to free speech, but here in the United States, there’s the First Amendment, which I’m sure you’ve heard of, and it guarantees it guarantees five things, freedom of assembly, freedom of speech, freedom of expression, religion, and freedom of the press. So there’s this group of people they’ve been doing this for, like 10 plus years where they go out and they record any thing they want from a public space, and they literally take the camera, hold it up and record. It can be a building, it can be an event, it can be a person. And invariably the reason why they do this is to test whether the First Amendment is still being treated properly because most of the targets of their recording are police and government buildings. So let’s go and stand outside a police station on record that just the ins and outs, and they may sit there for two or three hours. And what happens usually is a cop will come out, sometimes several of them and for the most part, now it’s getting better just before this whole thing happened. The past year or two, it’s been getting better because so many people are doing it. I mean, we have people doing it by the hundreds across the states.

Oscar Gonzalez
The cops would come out and say oh, you can’t record here. This is this is our private facility. And you’re not allowed to record and you know, go away or we’re going to arrest you we’re going to the cops would basically break the boundary of them being a law enforcement officer and turning into what we jokingly call emotion enforcement officers just because they feel that they feel like hey, you shouldn’t be recording me, then they would escalate to that. And the thing is, always the bad cops that are in those videos are always the ones that tried to assert some authority that they don’t have. Whether it’s like, give me your ID, we don’t in the States, you are not required to give it to anybody for any reason other than if you’re suspected of committing a crime or have committed a crime. That’s it. So like, if you’re a cop, and you stop me in the middle of the road, if you can’t articulate what’s called reasonable articulable suspicion, which means I think that you stole something from this bank right now. And I need to see your ID right now. They can’t say that they cannot demand your ID. But time and time and time again, we see that happening. And so when I saw this thing happened with the cops, it’s like, I’ve seen that play over, over and over and over the difference what I’ve seen for the past five or six years is that that person that was on the ground with a knee in their neck has been all kinds of colors every single time I see them. I’ve seen women, I’ve seen Mexicans. I’ve seen Asians as in Puerto Ricans, I’ve seen blacks, whites, all kinds pretty evenly. The one thing that is always, always always the common denominator is a bad cop. So I wrote that piece. And I said, Hey, this is I’m going to say my peace because I knew this was going to escalate into a big I never thought it would escalate into the violence that we’re seeing. But what I ended up posting was like this is an issue with cops and authority where they think that they know everything. And us as a population we are intimidated by them because well, they’re the cops right? They’re gonna arrest me put me in jail, or whatever. So I must comply and people that don’t comply. end up getting beat up and you know, there’s a lot of argument about whether George Floyd the guy, you know, you know his name, right? So yeah, what they said, Well, he was resisting arrest and he was on drugs and and my perspective is like, that is irrelevant. He was already subdued, he was already under control. The the proper protocol across the entire country is for that person to be handcuffed, stood up, I’m putting that back of the cop (car). And that’s it. But that didn’t happen. And that’s what told me this is not a racial issue. Because that could have been me, that could have been anybody that just said something wrong to the cops, because that happens all the time. I saw another video today where some guys recording a traffic stop. And the citizen says, Oh, I don’t want to be recorded. Well, that’s nice. And that’s a nice request. But that’s not his… he doesn’t get to decide that because if they’re in a public space, we can record but then the cop her that and then the cop got on the guy’s case. And, you know, he tried to intimidate him. He walked up to him. Chest up high like bullying him. But the guy stood his ground and he was actually able to walk out of it. But I’ve seen other cases where it goes wrong. And I follow this guy. his, his name is big Nick, South accountability, or South County accountability. He’s from Florida. And he’s a black dude. And he’s a black dude. And he is amazing. He works to cops like no other. And he just basically gets on his face. But the thing The thing is that he knows his rights. He knows the boundaries of what is right. So when I show that to people as someone No no, all cops are racist, or all white people racism. How do you explain this? Because here’s a guy that handles himself. Some people will say belligerently, but he’s not. He’s just being a little bit loud. But he’s saying no, my right is to record I’m not gonna stop me. And he’ll stand up to white guys, black guys, Asian guys, it doesn’t matter. He has been harassed by obviously, all kinds of cops. So at the end of the day, I don’t think This is a black, white issue. And then if we go into the numbers, you know, there’s countless black people that are extremely successful that I’m like, Okay, if, if I wanted to model after somebody, I would want to be after them, like, you know, all the actors, there’s businessmen, there’s all kinds of people, and how do they do it? So, it’s an interesting discussion to have. Because I wonder, like, do you feel like you have, you know, looking at me and maybe looking, I don’t know, what common friend that we have that’s white. That’s maybe our level or the same? I don’t know. I can’t think of one but

Oscar Gonzalez
like, do you feel like you have work harder you have had to work harder than your counterparts to get to where you are? Is that feel like do you kind of going back to the systemic racism which I we can get into it. A little But I don’t think is there. But maybe it’s a matter of semantics. So do you feel like you’ve had to work significantly harder? Not just than your peers, but then the same people that the people that are at the same level as you, you know, so if somebody that’s like successful, like your entrepreneur maybe has a video show like you, maybe they got called in, like, into LinkedIn like you did to do all this stuff, if you look at that person, not the peers that you were, you know, growing up and stuff, but the people that are at your level now, do you think they will have to work less than you did to get to where they are?

Oscar Gonzalez
Um, I would, I would say, I don’t think there’s like aa generalization, I would say, yeah, and the reason why I would say yes, is because I feel like I have to work to prove that I’m not the stereotype. Before I can then start working to prove that I’m good enough. For the job, so, like my experiences before I was an entrepreneur, I was kind of studying and I had part time jobs on the side as well. And I experienced, you know, my fair share of racism in the workplace as well and more so just being looked down on and one of the reasons why the George Floyd video touched me so so much so that it compelled me to not only create a video about it, but also I had to take a week off of work because it emotionally touched me so much. And the reason why I did it was because and this this is something that’s it can’t be quantified. Or it can’t there’s no statistics or anything that I can I can use to back this up but there comes a there’s like a point in the video is that almost halfway through, where there’s almost like this smug look the officer has a nice fit on his face. I paused at that point because that look, reminds me of, of looks that I used to get from higher management in a certain office job that I had, whilst I was still doing my business part time trying to be full time in it. And so I’ve seen a lot of kind of people create the comparison of, you know, the the knee on, George Floyd’s neck, kind of symbolizing metaphorically, what we sometimes have to experience in the workplace. And I would agree that there’s racism across the board. It’s not necessarily just black people. There’s people who are racist to other races as well. I definitely recognize that look, and even to the point where I had a manager at one time at work where a manager would come in and I knew she didn’t like me and I gave her absolutely no reason to not like me. She was a white lady. And obviously as a young black man There’s just stereotypes. There’s there’s just stereotypes that that surround us, that is difficult to break away from. And so yeah, she would come in and she would treat me differently to everybody else. But it’s difficult to really articulate that unless someone else sees it, and is able to identify it. So if I just say if I say something, then she will just be like, all you’re being crazy. And I think sometimes, that’s the most difficult thing that I’ve experienced anyway, being a being a black person is trying to show people that there’s a race issue. And I think that’s kind of one of the biggest obstacles is saying, Wait a minute, wait, there is a race issue. And it’s hard… sometimes it’s really difficult to explain, but when the evidence is there, and it’s kind of on on on video is difficult to dispute. And what happened when my colleague realized there was a race issue was when my manager came, and myself and her were sitting next myself and my colleague was sitting next to each other, and then my manager kind of walked out. And then my colleague said to me, why did she speak to you like that? And I just said to her, you know, just don’t worry about it, it’s fine. Because I knew that it was a race thing. It was a race thing was because even though she was my manager, she does. She knows she didn’t know me personally. So basically, it was like a serviced office. So I don’t I think you guys probably have this in America. But basically, I was like the receptionist person. And I was I worked in a specific building. And her only job was to come in and kind of just check up check up on us, but more so kind of just take different clients around the building to show them possible units that they can have. So it’s like different companies would work in that building. So she’s kind of trying to sell the company that you know that they should buy this office or whatnot. So I don’t I had no personal relationship with her. So it’s not like I could have said something to her that offended her. First, she didn’t interview me. So like, there was no reason for her to speak to me differently or to treat me differently than any other person because she doesn’t know me. She doesn’t really know any of my colleagues. But the only thing that she has to go by is that I look different. And so deep down internally, I knew it was a race issue, but the reason why I didn’t say anything to my colleague is explaining that sometimes it’s like an uphill struggle, just try and take the race issue. So I think looking at the even when there is evidence there is still difficult to try and, you know, prove and add I don’t I don’t necessarily have anything to win or lose. If If you know to falsely say always It’s a race issue. You know, some people say you know, you’re pulling the race card or whatnot, but so often, I kind of well as black people, we just have to keep quiet about certain things. Because we know that the struggle to explain what’s going on is probably going to cause us just more issues than you know, then then then is needed. So I think I don’t, I wouldn’t say I necessarily agree with everything that’s happening right now with regards to the black, the black Lives movement. But one of the things that I am kind of happy about is that racism, that talk is now being had, and it’s being brought to the forefront. And for the first time, I actually feel like I can have conversations like this without, you know, feed in like, someone was gonna say, oh, but it’s not racism. You know, maybe that person just doesn’t like you. Or maybe you did something, you know, I mean, so I feel like for the first time, I’m actually being able to have this kind of conversation without feeling out of place, if that makes sense.

Oscar Gonzalez
Yeah, it makes sense. It does make sense and it kind of brings it back a little bit to part of what Patrick said on his video, but also my own part of my own experience. You know, like I said, I think we were not recording yet. But I when I told you, you know, I’ve had my own share of prejudice, um, and you know, for lack of a better term racism upon me because, you know, I was born in Mexico, and I was not wealthy or anything. So it wasn’t a money issue. But we had, we had what we needed as I was growing up, but I was always an outcast. So I was not Mexican enough to be, you know, part of the, the cliques and the groups and stuff and then we moved here to the States. I was not white enough. I was not American enough to be part of that. And so I’ve always been found kind of caught up in limbo and I had to work you know, harder, I think than, most of my peers, just kind of like you said, You know, I have to get past that bump first. Kind of like, you have to get to a point where you are allowed to prove yourself first. And I get that. And in fact, I had as somewhat of a similar situation, I want one of my first jobs. I was doing what I thought was amazing work. My boss was saying was great. My peers were saying was great. Other directors were saying was great, but there was one person that was kind of a stakeholder. And my boss went in one time to talk to her and she said, Yeah, no, she really has it out for you. I’m like, why? Like she has. I’ve done nothing. And this person had it out for me the whole time for almost a year until I finally confronted her. I said, What is the problem? Like, what did I do to get this from you? Because and the moment I questioned her, that was the end of it. She never mistreated me again. And she never explained herself and nothing ever came up. I never found out what but another boss after that. So said the same thing, because when it was time for review, turns out both of the the first boss that told me told me that because she wanted to give me a raise, and this person was fighting to say no, you know, maybe it’s time to let him go. And she’s like, why? Like he’s one of the best workers. So even after I confronted her and she cooled off a couple years later for my next friend, Nick, another review with a different boss, she said, Yeah, you like she really has something against you. And I never found out but I could only say, hey, maybe it I’m Mexican, because she was she wasn’t she was, you know, white, and I don’t know. But I always chuck that into my from my personal experience because I’ve I had grown up growing up similar situations and I grew up without a dad until I was like 11. And then I had a stepdad and my, my grandpa when he was kind of a role model for me. He basically said, you know, when people tell you like when people pick on you just don’t just ignore it, like it is not worth anything you know what you’re doing, you know what, what you’re doing. Like, basically, you gave me kind of a pep talk, that seems a little cliche, but basically like, do your own thing. And don’t worry about what people are gonna say. And I took that to heart. And every time somebody kind of bullied me or something, I thought, Hey, you know what, this guy’s just just an idiot. You know, I got my good share of scuffles and fights and stuff. And as I grew older, of course, those become just verbal fights. And eventually, I got to a point where I said, You know, I can give you guys all the finger and go my own way, because I’ve made my own way. And the people that know me know me, and I know myself, so I don’t need to be worried about it. But um, you know, I think what you’re describing, I can’t say that it’s not racism, because I believe that it probably is racism, but it brings it back to like my wife, you know, she’s Asian, and she’s experienced some of those and I have friends from all races and they will tell me told me several stories the same. And I wonder, am I more open to hearing that story and not question it? Because I don’t question what you’re telling me. I don’t I don’t believe there’s something else that the person didn’t like you or anything. But am I more open? Because I’ve experienced it myself? Or is it just something that happens to everybody? And at the end of the day, there’s just bad people out there? Becausethat’s what i don’t i don’t I don’t believe that a notion of systemic and institutional racism, like there’s, and then there’s two, there’s two, you know, semantics on that. Right. So, I guess if I could maybe try to define it a little bit, I guess systemic is that there are systems in place, overtly or inadvertently, that encouraged racism and then institutional is more about there’s actual laws and policies that discriminate. So for example, South Africa apartheid, right, like that’s institutional that is you cannot do this because you’re black or you cannot do this because you’re white. So that’s to me that’s clear cut institutional racism. While systemic might be what you what you were describing, like, hey, my appear we’re sitting right next to each other and I get the shit and they don’t so but even then like, is a is that person being a racist asshole? Or is that institutional like is that happened with every other person in authority in that company and then somewhere else so that’s a part of that is so nebulous and I can see the frustration from your part to say, look, we can’t explain it because, like, you can’t, you can’t. You can’t understand it until you feel it. But then we have on the States and I’ve kind of been quiet about this because I just don’t want I don’t want to fight it. I don’t want to argue with it. I don’t want to get anybody’s emotions riled up in a time that sensitive for for them or everybody I think. But there’s I don’t know if you’ve heard of a lady named Candace Owens. Have you heard of her name?

Sam Dey
Lady who?

Oscar Gonzalez
Candace Owens? Yes.

Video transcript and closed captioning for the video by Otter.ai

Sam Dey
Is that the black lady?

Oscar Gonzalez
Yeah. So yeah, yeah, so she’s very conservative. And she has very, like she 10 times more than I believe. There’s no racism institutionalized like she says, you know, work your ass off and you will make it or the opposite. The other side of that is to be a victim and claim hey, you know what, I’m just being opressed. That’s why I can’t make it and so this is why I also don’t think this whole situation is a race issue because here’s a black lady educated. And but if you bring her up here in most circles right now, she’s called a racist, and you’re called a racist. And it’s like, well, but I am listening to a black voice, I am listening to her experience and what she says. And this is what she’s the only one but then there’s literally hundreds of other black people that adhere to what she’s saying, which is work your butt off, you know, challenges come in all sizes, colors and for every single person. And that’s what my first comment to you on Instagram was, you know, I hear you but I don’t think this is a uniquely black experience, but from what I understand from from talking to you and a couple other friends. Maybe it is in a way that like I’m light brown, as you… you might see that people there’s a there’s a big difference between being light brown and being black and being, you know what, when, like, if you’re white and light brown or white and Italian, white and Asian, people don’t see a big difference on that. But they say, if you go from from white to being black, they said, that’s a huge difference. So would you agree that that there is something where it may be a personal issue, but you as a black person have it worse? Is that where you’re kind of, like you’re saying that you? You know, because I’ve shown that I have some my own experiences we’ve raised, and I have countless other friends that have as well. But why is it black lives that are the issue or not… you know, why am I considered racist? If I was to say, oh, all lives matter and not black lives matter? It’s kind of what I’m saying.

Sam Dey
Um, good question. I don’t I don’t necessarily agree with the notion that saying all lives matter is racist, per se. But I do believe that there are people who are racist who do use it. But not that’s not saying that everybody who uses it is racist because I had this conversation with someone who was using it on Facebook, he was actually a friend of mine. And I had a conversation with him. And at the end of the conversation, he kind of like, was understanding more so why that statement was offensive to some people in the context in which he was kind of using it. I think that everyone, well, a lot of non whites probably can, you know, speak about some sort of experience that they’ve had that was racist. I think what makes the black experience unique is while at least on a large scale anyway, I know that were disproportionately in a lot of the statistics in America are very similar to the statistics here in the UK. So we’re disproportionately affected in terms of like our likelihood to die in, in police custody. When you look at the percentages, it’s disproportionate to other races. And I think that’s where it becomes an issue because there’s a, there’s a big difference between, you know, being on the backfoot for a job. And it being a life and death issue. You know, if an officer sees you, and he is threatened by your skin color, that means he’s probably more likely to taser you or to use force on you or to use a weapon on you, even when your hands are in the air. And I think that that for me is is where it becomes something that is is not right, that’s that becomes when it’s not okay, because all of a sudden now, my, the color of my skin is now a weapon when I don’t even have a weapon. So the video that I put out on YouTube was literally like me with my hands in the air and saying, you know, I’m unarmed. And I think there’s a I think I think there’s a bill that they’re trying to get passed at the moment, which is something to do with, like, if you have your hands in the air and you’re surrendering, then then an officer will be prosecuted for something. I don’t know. I just saw it on social media. Yes. I think so. Yeah. I just saw on social media, so I’m not sure if it’s hard and fast. But that would be something that I would see as a positive moving forward. Because at least I know as a as a as a as a black man or as any man, like you said, If I’m surrendering, and my hands are up, please don’t shoot me. You know, don’t take me

Oscar Gonzalez
and I agree with that. It doesn’t matter if you’re literally coming out of the bank with a bag of money in your hand. Like it doesn’t matter. Again, given up you say fine, you got me like That’s it? I completely agree. Yeah, I yeah, it’s a tough discussion because there’s there’s a statistic that is It’s in the States, I don’t know if it’s reflective or similar in the UK, but black people make about 13% of the population in the States. And half of that, or so, you know, six to 7% depending on how you look is men, right? And so they say, the statistics shows that over something like over 45% of violent crime is committed by that 6% of men, you know, not all of them, of course, but by by black men. So that’s disproportionately the biggest part of the crime, right? So people bring that in as a way to say, Well, the reason why they’re in police custody more is because they commit more crime, accounting for all the you know, extrapolating population. So normalizing all the statistics. It says that black people commit more crime than every other race to non black people. And then of course, there’s the question that some people have with blacklivesmatter, where they say, Look, 95% of black men are dying at the hands of black men. So how come and we’re you know, and we had just two days ago, I think Chicago, saw the worst crime day in like 60 years of history, and it was black men dying at the hands of black men. But we don’t hear about a lot of that in the media. So, and just for the record, like between you and me, and anybody else that happens to watch this, I completely agree with black lives matter as a matter of fact. But something that’s happening a lot in our culture globally, is the… what’s the right word?

Oscar Gonzalez
The hijacking of our words. You have, for example, antifa. That is supposed to be anti fascism, but they are the most fascist group. So people people don’t scratch the surface and into hear “antifa”. No, they’re anti fascist. Why are you against them? Well, it’s because they’re violent. and stuff. And so in the same way, the movement, the organization of BLM, I believe this bad. Now, if we could separate the two, I think we’d have a lot more open discussions between people because on one side, you have people that are completely against BLM, because every time they show up, there’s violence. And then you have the people like you and like me that said, Yeah, Black Lives Matter. And it could be that Asian, black Asian Lives Matter and Mexican Lives Matter and white lives matter. But right now, we happen to be focusing on black lives. I get that. And I’m all for that. The problem is when we conflate both, and a political organizational movement, and put it together with a novel term, like Black Lives Matter, and I think that they become muddied. And there’s a lot of agendas behind the scenes that drive the division. And I think that’s part of what happens and It goes kind of back to what I was saying on that meme, you know, remove the colors from the headlines, that would satisfy a lot of stuff because it just doesn’t incite. You know how you you as an SEO and web web guy know, just like me that people don’t go past the headline most of the time, right? They see a headline, and they immediately think they know the story whether we’re selling a course, or something and somebody reads, black man murdered by corrupt white cop. Oh, that in three year that alone just infuriates people right there. But if you said, Man, murder by cop, then they’re forced to read it. they’re forced to read the story and say, Okay, well what happened? What were the facts? Oh, well, this cop went out of line, didn’t follow the protocol didn’t do what he was supposed to do. And yeah, the guy was committing a crime, but he still was arrested. He should have been put in the car. So we could get past that initial gut feeling reaction to say, Oh, yeah, this. “See, I told you all why all cops are racist” or white cops are racist and then people. People get hung up on that because they’ve already made up their mind. But the media I think is the most complicit on riling us up against each other because that’s how they get clicks. We know that we know if we want to sell a product we got to do, we got to come up with a juicy headline, right? So obviously, they know that in a declining state of nobody’s buying print, nobody’s buying subscriptions. Nobody wants to pay $6 a month to get a newspaper. They just want to get a free online so they have to catch our attention somehow. So I try to I try to go through independent news news channels. And the problem with that, like I just mentioned a minute ago is I follow for example, there’s a couple there’s two twins that are black guys called Hodge Twins. I don’t know if you’re heard of the Conservative Twins. They’re just two commentators, two black dudes that are just Are commentators and they just talk about the news. There’s a guy goes by ABL (Anthony Brian Logan), I forgot his name. He’s another black dude. I went through the list of stuff and I follow what I think is a fairly balanced source of news. And I follow it from the left, I felt from the right I follow blacks, Mexicans, Asians, and some whites. And the moment I bring the black people that I follow, I get called. Well, no, those are not really black people. They’re being racist Oh, there, and they call him all kinds of names. In the US, I’m sure they have him in the UK too. But basically, they’re like, you’re black in skin, but you’re not black in heart kind of thing. So I think that’s what needs to stop that from my perspective. Oh, and I made a note here because you’ve mentioned something about cops getting prosecuted and stuff about the law. So here’s what I know about. I don’t know what the law you’re talking about the hands up and surrendering and stuff. But here’s what’s so messed up about our political system in the in the United States, and I’m sure there’s something similar in the UK, in the United States, we have a thing called qualified immunity for every government official. And when qualified immunity means is that if you are in the course of performing your duties, and you make a mistake, and you didn’t know that was a mistake, you are pretty much absolved from any wrongdoing. Think about that. How, how did that work? Like, if you are, I don’t know, a nurse and you’re doing your job. And you do something that you didn’t know is wrong, but you kill a patient. Imagine that you were completely off the hook for that. But when at the end of the day is just a common sense thing that you shouldn’t have done like, hey, well, I didn’t know that. You know, if I put a pillow over their head while I’m changing their feet socks, they’re going to suffocate so Well, you didn’t know that. But that’s common sense. Like you should have thought about it, right? So in the same way, cops can do that. And if you watch any of the First Amendment audits I told you about, you’ll see what the First Amendment auditors do, what they do in the area, what there are, they say, look, the Constitution said in this clause first amendment… you know, the Supreme Court ruled in this case, in this case, and you are not allowed to because of this clause in the law, and they’ll read them to the cops. And the moment they say that say, then they tell them, hey, you’re qualified immunity is out the window. And sometimes you’ll see the cops just immediately snap out of it. Like they know, hey, they know what that word means. And they know now they can’t beat him up. They can’t take the camera where they can’t do anything because this person behind the cameras educated and now they’re liable for prosecution civilly and criminally. And so a lot of the movement that is happening right here that I completely support is to remove that qualified immunity. Qualified immunity should be out the window. Basically, this guy that’s going to trial for George Floyd could say, Hey, I was just trying to restrain him as part of my job and he was fighting me. So I was just, and then because of that he could get away with it. But if, because of qualified immunity, you can say, it was just the best I could do to restrain him. When of course, the opposite is like no dude you were hunting for on him for five or eight minutes. And then the other cops and I agree that the moment that you mentioned, I know exactly what you’re talking about, he had a smirk. And then he had his hand in his pocket. Like he was like, Yeah, like, I am, like, I am. Like, it was, it was outrageous. And then the other cop that’s standing to the side where he tells the guy look, he’s talking, he’s okay. You know, and the two conservative twins, I just tell you that, of course, everybody will say this. On hindsight, you know, hindsight is 2020. But they said, Look, if I would have been there, I would have pushed a cop off of them like, I would would have done something about it. But at the same time, like that’s easy for us to say right now, like even I would say that Yeah, like if I see that I’m gonna jump on the cop and get him off. But there are four other cops around there all of them with guns, all of them already violating their oath and the rights of the people. What makes you think they’re not just going to take you out in a heartbeat thinking exactly, yeah, and they’ll use that qualified immunity. So hey, I didn’t know if he was armed. I felt threatened for my life, so I had to shoot him. That’s what would have happened if somebody jumped in there. Which I I wish somebody would have of course and I hope I would have hoped that they came out safe but like everybody was recording, but somebody could have just stepped up and done something but at the same time, I don’t know if I would have because I’m like, Hey, you guys are armed. And you guys are so twitch friendly in the states like you guys are shooting people for no reason. So there was only I felt threatened. I didn’t know if you had a knife or something on it then they would have shot you. So, to me the biggest issue that stemmed out of the George Floyd thing is the corruption and the cops not being held responsible. But I guess it’s opened up a discussion for this whole racism. The probably the only problem I have with leaning on racism is that I am so surprised I’m having this conversation, you know, and we’re friendly about it. Like you’re, we, I think if we if this is a the two extremes, and this is the middle, I think we’re like, right here. Like I think you’re super close.

Sam Dey
I I would agree with that. I think it’s difficult at the same time because I, I fully understand the outrage and I fully understand people posting certain things online and getting completely slaughtered for it. Because I feel the same thing that a lot of people who are posting, feel. And so I know that it’s very easy to To be the person who is the keyboard warrior and being that, oh, you’re a racist, you’re this and you’re that, and I’ve been there, even during this period. My hands are not clean, either, you know, I’ve been there. And I’ve done that. And I think what changed the narrative for me was when a friend of mine posted something really offensive on Facebook. But I had to take a step back and say, wait a minute, but I know this person. And they wasn’t, I didn’t, I wouldn’t have said that they were a racist when I saw them, you know, what’s going on? And that’s what made me stop, stop in my tracks and have an actual conversation with him and speak to him about my experiences being black. And I think that kind of helped to change it for me, and I realized that conversation is key. And I think there definitely are people who are just, they’re just, they’re just flat out racists, you know, and they just have no time at all for people who look like me. Maybe for even people who look like you. But there’s just people who are just who and that’s not going to change. And I think my understanding anyway, or form of systematic racism, or racism within laws, I believe that the US and the UK have become really, really good at being racist. And the reason why I say that is because I feel like racism like during during the times of slavery, so for America going back to like 1619 obviously, it’s not necessarily from the from the top level anyway, it’s not necessarily a thing of I hate you because you’re black. It’s more of just an economic thing. It’s more of a thing of if I can oppress you, then I remain rich. And I feel like that has not really changed too much. You know, there’s there’s there’s countless examples in history of, you know, political leaders, who have used race to win campaigns. wherever they are, whether they are actually racist or not, I don’t think we will know because i think you know it’s well they aren’t they are racist but they’re they’re more so using that because they’re greedy or they’re hungry for power so they want to stir up kind of like a racist narrative.

Sam Dey
Right yeah. Or at least use that as a way to gain political power we had I just because I think UK history is not spoken about a lot. So we kind of know about like, Rosa Parks we know about Martin Luther King we know about, you know, the civil rights movement and itself, which doesn’t make sense like why are we fighting just just for civil rights? You know, when you think about it, I wasn’t even too long ago, we’re talking about like, what was that like? 1950s 60s 60s? Yeah, yeah. So that wasn’t too long ago where, you know, black people in America are fighting for basic civil rights. And in the UK, as well, like sometimes we we think oh no racism, was something that happened such a long time ago. But the truth of the matter is, not only is racism still very much a part of our infrastructure, but it’s also like the effects of like the slave trade, that they’re still impacting people present day. I think a key example of that is like the UK like Great Britain, we only stopped paying compensation to a lot of slave traders in 2015 like compensation, because of the abolition of slavery is only 2015. And a lot of the biggest banks here in the UK, were founded off of the back of slavery. So the whole British economy is kind of founded upon that. And, you know, when you when you when you kind of look when you look through history, and you look at the slave trade from like, 16 For America, is like from 1619, to about 1845 roughly the biggest kind of economic trade was, was the trade of slaves was was black slaves. You know, it was bigger. It was financially It was a bigger investment, and it made more money than any of our any other trades. So we’re obviously when that ended, or at least legally ended anyway, that would have been a big, a big kind of financial burden on a lot of companies that were kind of using it to fuel their economy. And I think Ava Ava DuVernay done a really great job in her documentary 13th on Netflix, really great, really great documentary. Yeah. And she was speaking about kind of like, how the prison system has almost become the new, new form of slavery, to kind of keep the economy going. So To speak and how prisoners are used to kind of creates either cheap or free labor for certain companies and so if you if you have a company or an individual who’s profiting from people being imprisoned, then there’s is there’s always going to be a motive for someone or some company to keep incarceration rates high. And kind of yeah, go go and just briefly to UK history of of racism and how it’s been used and so on and so forth. Like my granddad came to the UK, which is why I’m here today. I was part of what what is known as like the Windrush generation. So obviously written colonized a lot of the West Indies, and my granddad was from Jamaica, and, basically, you know, Great Britain handed out kind of almost like a free pass into the UK to say, look, we need to build our economy back again. Because of the back of World War II, there was a lot of buildings that were destroyed. And they basically needed people to come and they needed labor. So my granddad as long as as well as, you know, 10s of hundreds of thousands of other black people from the Caribbean came here settled, but my granddad was faced with like signs on doors saying no blacks, no Irish, no dogs, you know, and that wasn’t a long time ago, you know, that was that was literally just my granddad. And then obviously, there was laws introduced, like, the sauce laws as well that is kind of similar to like stopping such laws now, okay, but they disproportionately impact the black community. You know, as opposed to the white community. So it means it creates what it does, is it creates more of a hostile relationship between police and the black community. Whereas simple things can happen in terms of like more integration in terms of police and the community, especially from a young age. You know, if police officers actually went into schools and actually built relationships with the community, then they’re less likely to offend, because they actually know who their local police officers are. Police officers know the community. And so they’re supposed to be community officers, but that’s not gonna happen, because, you know, it’s almost like that they the black man is supposed to be oppressed, almost, you know, so a lot of these laws are bought into place to kind of keep black people oppressed. And the, the biggest, probably the biggest atrocity that I saw, was even though my granddad and you know, all of his peers were invited here. It was only about I think it was three years ago, 2015, not 2015, 2017 when what happened was, the Windrush they call it the Windrush scandal, whereby they would deport in a lot of our a lot of the black people from the Caribbean who came here in 1940, you know, 19… Well, the parents, a lot of the kids who came here, so there was one person who was on TV, like two days ago. He was like documenting his experiences of this. But he came here when he was eight years old, off of the back of the Windrush, and they’re trying to send all of them back home. And he hasn’t been to Jamaica since he was eight years old.

Oscar Gonzalez
Right.

Sam Dey
And that was off of the back of like a new law that had came that had come out a new immigration law and stuff like that, that only affected black people and lows and he, not only were they trying to deport him, but he lost his job, he lost his house. He was imprisoned as well treated like a prisoner, because he came here at the age of eight. And this scandal hit the news and when It hits the news that that’s when it becomes, you know, like this big thing and they’ve done a documentary about it on TV that wasn’t, it wasn’t well advertised. But it’s things like this that helped me to kind of just realize. I’ve always know this anyway. But it’s things like this that just remind me that racism still exists, it is within the fabric of our society. And it is, it is more subtle, it is more difficult to see, but I think not seeing it is is kind of harmful because then it kind of to assume that it’s not there means that it’s not going to get fixed. So it’s kind of like a, I don’t know, an issue with your car or something like that. If you know that it’s there, then you can fix it before it gets worse. Right if you if you ignore that it’s there or don’t believe that it’s there, then over time, it just gets worse and worse and worse. And I think that’s where we are now. Whether the debate is the debate is still, is it a race issue? Is it not a race issue? Whereas the real the real conversation should be how do we deal with the issue where it feels like we have to, like prove that there’s an issue first, which is going to take some time and then we can actually start dealing with the issue if that makes sense.

Oscar Gonzalez
Yeah, you mentioned you went in to explain to systematic racism and I think you pretty much you’ve explained like, like the Windrush scandal and a few other things like that proof to you that this is systematic, right, like it’s embedded. So, yeah, yeah, I have yet to hear something in the States. that supports it being systematic, but I’m sure there is something just like you mentioned. The one thing that I think is racist, racist, and that is institutional. And I’m still going to get heat from this because it goes against an entire narrative is an hour. I don’t know how it works in the UK, but in the States. We have a what’s called minimum wage. And minimum wage is, you know, a guaranteed minimum wage. Exactly. So I believe that’s a racist thing because it doesn’t let people really do the work that they want to do for a free market. But that goes into my own. I’m very much about the free market. And I wish there was less government regulation in the market because I think that would solve most of the issues. If you want to deal with me, and I want to deal with you, you tell me how much you want to pay me I accept or not, and then we move on. And now we have the government telling you how much you need to pay me and then how much I need to work. And I think that affects people color in poor communities a lot more than affects a wealthy community because, you know, if I’m, if I come from money, I’m not affected by a minimum wage, it doesn’t matter. I’m going to thrive no matter what because I have money. I have background support but if you are in a low, low economic situation, the owner at the store that might say, Hey, you know what I want to hire you to stock my fridges every, every, every morning before you go to school, but I can only pay you two bucks an hour. But you’ll be done in three hours and at least you made a little bit of money. Now you go into your day, maybe you have another job later on. If you say that’s great! I can use the money, I can use three hours of work in the morning every day and make an extra few bucks, you are not allowed to get that job, and I’m not allowed to pay that job. So that is affecting those communities a lot because, well, the owner is gonna say, Well, I just do it myself. I’ll work harder. And now you don’t have you don’t have a job you don’t have. It’s not a lot of money, but at least you could pay for what you did and not be guaranteed to make $15 an hour for, you know, standing around or doing very little work. So I think that affects a lot. As far as laws go, I don’t think there’s any laws in the States at Leaves are still in effect, that say, you know, it’s different for a black person than it is for a non black person. I think those might have been abolished recently, 60 years ago, but still, I think those are out. But there’s always going to be people in places that are racist. Right. And I don’t think we’re ever going to get rid of that. Kind of just going back to what Patrick said in his video, like, we’re always going to discriminate against the unknown, I guess that people are different from us, against people that are, you know, if we’re jealous, we’re going to look down upon the people that are sort of, sort of speak above us in in a way or another. And, but the one thing I wanted to ask you was, what is the solution? What would you What would you say, hey, you know, Sam is the dictator for the entire world right now he’s gonna wave a little wand and say, this one action is going to fix it, what would that be? Like? What would be the solution to say? it… I mean, before you ask that, do you agree that we can never get rid of racism at an individual basis? Do you agree that that’s impossible? Or do you think it is possible?

Sam Dey
I definitely think well, I don’t think it’s I don’t I don’t I don’t believe it’s possible. I think it’s if it was, if it is possible, it would be extremely difficult. And it will probably take generations upon generations to actually get there. But I think even like race is just one issue. We’ve got homophobia, we’ve got loads of different issues that, you know, need to be resolved. I think in asked your question in terms of some of the things that we can do, some of the things are just really basic, that governments just don’t do. So here for example, like I mentioned earlier, like best shutting down a lot of the youth clubs, which was actually helping the black community that that is kind of rifled and infested with crime for a lot of reasons that would, you know, be difficult for me to go into. Now, but but, you know, there are a lot of issues that are in those kind of less economically developed areas that more funding would help to work kind of overcome that. I think as well. The key thing for me is building a really good relationship between police officers and the community. You know, I feel like especially young people growing up especially in those deprived areas, they should know who their their local police officers are, you know, they should know who to call when they’re calling 999. And someone comes, they should that they should at least know one person from that that that particular place there should be relationships built with, with officers from a community level. That that kind of helps on both sides that helps police officers understand the community that they’re serving better, or that they’re supposed to be serving better. But I feel like it also lessens the likelihood of people committing crimes as well, because sure they know officers, you know.

Oscar Gonzalez
I was going to ask you two questions as you went along. But so, I don’t know if you know, maybe maybe like I said, it would take a really long time, and I don’t want to go on and on. I would be totally up to having this more frequently too but you said, you know, like, places that are like youth programs have been shut down stuff. Why is that? Why Has that happened? Like, and before you answer, there’s something that I always I tell my clients, I tell my friends, I tell anybody that’s wants to discuss big issues like this. I don’t know if you’ve heard of it. But have you heard of the Toyota management principle? No the five why’s Have you heard that? So Toyota for a while. Guess was making pretty crappy stuff or something happened that they were making some stuff and then a new manager came into place. And they basically developed this management system that addresses like 99% of the issues with anything and you can trans., you can transpose that into almost any system for any reason, and that is just simply to ask five to seven times why? So for example, you tell me, the gyms, you know, the public gyms for our youth programs were closed. Well, the first thing is not to say, well, let’s reopen them. The first thing is why? Oh, well, because we don’t have money. Why? Well, because people don’t have money and they’re not paying taxes because they don’t have jobs. Why? Well, they don’t have jobs because the factory down the street shut down. Why? and you know, you could go down the list. And if you go five to seven levels deep you find the root cause. And that’s what needs to be addressed in my opinion and ever… I discovered this maybe 15 years ago. So and it’s never failed me. The only issue with it is being honest. And sometimes people don’t want to ask past the second or third level, because then they start realizing what they thought was the reason for something it’s not. And then they Oh, well, that then it’s very hard for people to put their egos aside and say, well, like you. And I said at the beginning, like, you could be wrong, I could be wrong. And I’m totally okay with that. I’ve learned some things from you. And then a lot of people will say, well, if that crumbles, then we don’t have this other thing that we’re going after, so they won’t pursue it. So that’s why I kind of asked like, why were they shut down? And maybe it’s a very, very bigger, very much longer conversation, but it is worth asking. Why have they gone away? You know, I doubt that it was just somebody saying, how would this will really get to black people. So let’s take this way. I don’t know. I’m pretty sure that’s not the reason. So there has to be some… and It kind of always comes down to the money, right?

Sam Dey
It’s Oh, yeah. So,I mean, I think it’s more I think it’s more so just just just empathy. You know, I don’t, I don’t feel like we have a government that cares enough about about black issues, you know, and I feel like the black community as we know, this, you know, and we’re not necessarily I mean, we want as much support from the government as possible, because obviously, we’re still a minority were a minority in the UK were a minority in the US. So we’re always going to be limited in terms of what we can do from a funding perspective, to kind of help to raise ourselves and to kind of solve some of the issues that are within our own community. And I just, I just feel like the government don’t care, you know,

Oscar Gonzalez
So what I mean… So somebody I watched a video recently, I saw before, but somebody asked Denzel Washington when Obama was still the president, and they asked him what, how have race relationships improved since Obama came into place? And his answer was beautiful. I thought, Denzel said, “Well, you can’t legislate love”, you can’t legislate caring, right empathy you cannot legislate. You can’t make that happen so that the thing that will fix that is like you and I having this conversation, you go into your, whatever is called over there, city council, I’m talking to that owner to not only to the heads sitting of the community or whatever, and then, you know, having coffee with him, somewhere here in the states in the past few years. I don’t know how it’s been going on right now. But they started a single coffee with a cop, which kind of reinforces what you were mentioning right now. Basically, every morning, not every morning, but like once a week, most cities. I don’t know if it’s mostly it’s actually a lot of the cities at least around where I live, the different city precincts and stuff would go to a coffee shop and come and hang out with a cop. And it was basically to ask them questions. And I think that was building that community now at the end of the day, that’s government, but I think government needs to be local, more so than, you know, some person in Parliament or the President to wave a thing and say, oh, now everybody gets along. So no, you have to make that happen. So I don’t know that that the government doesn’t care or does care. As much as I don’t think they can do anything about it other than remove actual laws that that specifically target a group of people, right. So that’s, that’s kind of what I would say to that. It’s like you, you and your friends and you and your relationships are going to fix this me and talking to people. And I pulled out from the conversation a little bit on Facebook because a couple of people that I asked and you know, the the reason why I answered very short and I say hey you want to have a chat? is because of that. I didn’t want to go into a back and forth because you don’t get to see my face. You don’t get to hear my tone. I could say something, I could say something that basically doesn’t explain my point of view. And then you think, Oh, no, Oscar, doesn’t get it, and then it’s over. And then that’s it. And at the same time, like people are not willing to have that because prior to you, I said the same thing two or three people. Hey, give me a call. Like they have my number. Oh, no, that’s okay. You’re not going to change your mind. I’m like, Well, let’s… let me tell me what, because I don’t want to argue with you over chat. Chat has no emotion. There’s no nothing, right. So basically, I think that the way that we fix it is by having these conversations and Denzel basically said, Yeah, like, talk to him. hang out. Like, that’s how you taught. That’s how you fix someone else. Are you on TikTok at all? Do you use TikTok yet?

Sam Dey
Yeah, not not aggressively.

Oscar Gonzalez
You had some songs in there, I think, right?

Sam Dey
Yeah. Yeah,

Oscar Gonzalez
You have a pretty good voice too, by the way. Thank you. I saw, I saw somebody in there saying, Hey, you know, if you want to fix these issues, go to meetups that are primarily the other race and hang out with them and get to know them because cultural differences will be like, normal. And that’s what makes people nervous or scared, or, hey, how can they do it that way? How can they do this? How can they do that? It’s like, if you don’t know the culture, all you see is the surface level as to why they do something. And then that creates fear because obviously, we always fear something we don’t know. Right. So. So that was the one question I was gonna ask you why and then the other one, you said. Oh, I was gonna say how, but I think that’s the same thing like how do you get the government to fix it? Like, you know, how would they fix it?

Video transcript and closed captioning for the video provided by Otter.ai

Sam Dey
I think like, a good example is the statues at the moment are being taken down in the UK. I don’t know if you’ve heard about it. But there was a statue in Bristol of a slave trader. And that was kind of like the the origins of slavery in the UK. And it was one slave trader that had his statue up kind of like in the in the city center. And there was petitions signed for it to be removed. So even today, there’s still statues around kind of glorifying people who are, you know, heavily involved in the slave trade. And there’s, you know, been been numerous petitions people trying to, you know, contact their their local councils and local governments and stuff like that to get these down. And for years and years and years, it’s just been pushed back and no one’s done anything about it. But off of the back of the Black Lives Matter kind of movement and the campaigns, the protesters just took it down. They literally just, you know, done it themselves. And now, the UK, kind of looking into taking some of the other ones down as well, I think because they’re kind of concerned about people trying to take it down and it’d be a more of a, an issue than it could be if they just remove it themselves and put it into into a museum. And I think that’s one that’s just kind of like a physical representation in my opinion, anyway, of almost like asking a lot of knock back. So we’re saying we want to see this change. We want to see this change wants to see this change, and nothing is done about it because people don’t care enough. So sometimes there are occasions where you just have to just take it, you know, that’s the only the only way sometimes it can be it can be resolved and even though I don’t necessarily agree with everything that the Black Lives Well, everything that everyone is doing in the name of Black Lives Matter, I do believe that is kind of given black people a voice and it’s creating change that otherwise wouldn’t have happened and those statues in you know, is a is definitely one thing for me anyway, that’s that’s definitely a positive change.

Oscar Gonzalez
Sure. So, um, what happens next? And then what I mean… what, what do you say where’s the line drawn between Don’t forget your history and removing a symbol of a bad situation because, you know, they say for you forget the history, if you erase history, you will repeat it. So if you were to remove, say all symbols of that, because I doubt I could be wrong, but I doubt that they’re being used as a way to show Yeah, we beat them, like we’re still in charge of the black people, like, at some point that person was revered or whatever. Now they’re not obviously. But how can we use them for a positive thing without, for example, at the at the bare minimum is destroying property and so that that generates a crime which fuels the other side to say, see? we told you, they’re just criminals, they just want to wreck habit. So how do you justify or explain that needs to come down and by all means necessary, but then at the same time, we don’t want to be portrayed as a vandal group or disruptor group that disregards the laws and then also, why wouldn’t it be better to say, you know, you walk with your son down the street, and there it is. And you explain, hey, this is a moment to teach history to see this is where you’ve come from, this is where we are and look at what we have today. That is, you know, two times better a million times better whatever it is, how do we define Okay, what is the right way to go about that? Like, you know, what happens is that person was, you know, when do when do we stop the line like, so that guy was a slave trader, or, you know, a big guy, right? But then maybe down the street in another city, there’s another person that maybe who’s a banker for the slave trade, but he also gave loans to local people and made the economy great. So when do we draw the line to say, Well, no, that person is okay, that monument is fine, but this one’s weren’t. Like how do we define that?

Sam Dey
I think Firstly, it’s about listening to the people, because obviously the people in Bristol would definitely not listen into when they were when they were doing what the right thing to do was, you know, there were 10,000 signatures signed to get this thing down. And we’re talking like we’re not just talking recently this this has been an ongoing feud for for a number of years to get this actually taken down. And I think there’s a there’s a big difference between teaching something as history and glorifying something. And there would be a huge issue. I’m sure everyone would agree, if there was a statue of Hitler to be put up. Right now we’re in the center of our lives.

Oscar Gonzalez
And we have we have statues of Lenin everywhere, which was just as bad like Vancouver has in Toronto has some Monday revere him, right. So, is that a cultural thing? Is that a is that a sign of the times?

Sam Dey
So I say you broke up a little bit. So

Oscar Gonzalez
I said, I totally agree Hitler is undisputable. Right? Except unless you’re a neo nazi somewhere but But they do have, for example, Lenin. You know, they’re they’re statues of Lenin that people revere because of the communism, front and stuff like that. So there’s a lot of stuff that that’s where.. I get the not-glorifying one. And of course, yeah, it shouldn’t be glorified. But how would you teach? I mean, of course, there’s books and there’s classes and stuff, but I’m always, I always feel like I’m being lectured about history and like, oh, well, you didn’t learn to write history in, in school, because the white man wrote history. And then one question that I always ask when, when it happens, this sort of conversation, which is rare, but like, Are you familiar with the name Anthony Johnson? Have you heard of that name before?

Sam Dey
No I haven’t.

Oscar Gonzalez
And in the context of racism and slavery, no. So he was a black man. He was the first black slave owner and he had more slaves than almost anybody throughout his whole entire life in the States, but they don’t teach on in history. So you have to learn that on your own. And that’s a hard thing to for people to cope with. When you say, well, what about all the Irish people that were slaves? I mean, literally kept in cages, like dogs in the UK and in the States. So, you know, how do we, what what purpose? I mean, I get the emotional part, I guess, or they listen to the people. And, you know, without getting into the weeds of 10,000 signatures. What does that mean as far as the population goes, because obviously, it didn’t do anything to have a signature to the point where the community felt like they had to take it down. But how do we how do we prevent a slippery slope from saying that really, really, really loud and vociferous minority is taking the rule over a mostly quiet majority. Like, how do we define like, hey, that was the right thing to do. Like I use it arbitor to determine that was the right thing to do? Or is it 10,000 signatures? How many people are in that area? How many people are in Bristol? Is 10,000 a significant… Like, are there 25,000 people in there? Or is there a million people? You know, so we always have to be careful. I guess with that, because to that same thing, we have the exact same thing happening right here. And it happened a few years ago. I think it just happened. Just I just saw a couple videos of another statue getting taken down. I don’t even know what it was, but I’m sure it was some somebody that was leading either parts of the civil war or against it or something. But it happens all the time. And at the end of the day, I wonder like, what does that do? What does that really do at the end of the day? Like, if we take them all down, we have we fixed it, like are we done with racism? Can we move on to something else? Or is it just one kind of step towards some other goal?

Sam Dey
difference. I definitely think it’s a positive step i think is extremely offensive. Even for me personally seeing certain statues up and you know, knowing that way this man was directly involved because obviously my family come from from the West Indies so this this man was directly involved in the enslavement, torture, killing and rape of my ancestors, you know, and seeing that kind of up glorified without much historical context to it. I think that’s just it’s just, it’s very offensive to a lot of people. And I think yeah, that there is a place for for statues and monuments like that in museums, and in history books. I don’t think we should completely forget history because it’s super important, but I don’t think that having it, you know, smack bang in the center. And I think that, that there’s a lot as well like schools and, you know, organizations that are kind of named after like the slave traders because of the money that they used from slavery, helps to fund these, these different projects and organizations and stuff like that. But I just feel like there’s a there’s a thin line between teaching someone history and having someone up there because they’re revered. And a lot of the the people who are up there actually there because they were revered, at least at the time it was put up, if that makes sense. And because of not necessarily because of the slavery, but because of what they done after the slavery or what they used the money for in the community. But I still think that it shouldn’t, it shouldn’t. It shouldn’t be there in the first place. So I think that, you know, taking it down is definitely it doesn’t solve all of the issues. But it does, in my opinion, is a first step. At least if the government decides to take it down. It’s the first step that they are acknowledging, wait a minute, These people were were a part of the slave trade. And we don’t we don’t back that we’re going to take these down and put them in museums.

Oscar Gonzalez
Sure. No, I mean, I agree. Like, some of those things should definitely be removed. I’m just curious, like, when do we take things into our own hands as opposed to, again, my opinion, I think, to make that a step towards a better tomorrow would have been that the government take it down. Right? Yeah. Because then they would have acknowledged what you’re saying and be like, hey, it’s time to take this away and move on. But I don’t know that taken down by force helps anybody because now the government’s upset. The people that secretly wanted to stay there are upset and it just feels more of the rage to the people to take it down. I think but you know, that…

Sam Dey
…maybe, I mean, personally. This is a very selfish point of view. But when I when I see the images of like an just you just see the… I don’t know what you call it by the statue is gone and I just see an image there now of no statue. Oh sure, it brings a smile to my face, you know, knowing that it was taken down, you know, like, I, I don’t necessarily agree with the methods, but do I understand it? Yeah. And am I happy that it’s down? Yeah would it would I change it? No You know I’m very I’m very I’m very happy.

Oscar Gonzalez
Are they planning on… have there been any talks of putting something else in place like making it into something different now like

Sam Dey
They they threw it into into the into the river I believe so the talks now are that they’re apparently they’re going to take out a river and put into a museum which I think is a great, a great thing you know, and that probably would never have happened if they didn’t take issues into their own hands in terms of what they’re going to replace it with. They may just leave it as it is. Because that now is part history as well, the fact that it was taken down. Yeah. Yeah. And even like all of the, the spray paint on it and everything that is now a part of history that I feel like is important to remain there kind of thing.

Oscar Gonzalez
Sure. Yeah. Ah, let’s see… Yeah, I mean, now this is I mean, I could go on for a long time. But I mean, we’ve taken taking two hours of your time. I don’t know how you feel about it. But I’ve learned quite a bit from you. I, I think there’s a lot of similar experiences in the UK and the US. Obviously, there’s fundamental differences between the two countries just in the way that they govern themselves and how you know, our DNA, of course, us having having been part of the UK at some point and then kind of say, Nope, we’re going to do our own thing. I think that people miss a part about the US where it’s kind of in our DNA and I’m.. an immigrant I’m not like… I wasn’t born here. So but I still subscribe to the idea like, hey, stand up for what’s right and do what you believe to be right and fight for it till the death basically. And I think that’s what a lot of people are doing now with a black lives matter stuff is like hey, this is the American dream and it’s ours too I just wish we didn’t have to have any violence and stuff. And they say well, the thing that the thing that I can’t subscribe to is yes well we’ve been talking about this for a long time and we haven’t been heard. And me coming in as a as a teenager. I don’t see that as much as I hear them say that. I hear that… I see black people succeeding everywhere. I see black people in positions of power I see… mostly equality and I think what they what most people want to see and this is not just black but this is like you’re saying related to gender issues and other issues, everybody seems to want equality of outcome, as opposed to equality of opportunity. And I don’t know if you’ve heard those two terms in this context or not. But I think those are key as well. I believe that in the eyes of the law, and for the most part, you know, with the exception of some examples that you mentioned, and I’m sure there’s a few examples that we can talk about in the States, maybe more than a few, but I believe that we, we are as equal as we have ever been, more so than we were, you know, 10 years ago, 20 years ago. Is there still work to do? I think so. You and I agree that racism itself as a concept as an idea, it’s never going to go away, because some people will never be open to somebody that’s different than they are. But what we have have to be careful as to make sure that we don’t favor any of those groups and go from what we perceive, or we think it is, or it is institutional racism to more institutional racism to try to correct that. Right? What I don’t I’ve been asked to numerous times, for example, to be part of Latin Latin business groups. Oh, come join our Latino group. I’m like, No. Why? Like, why is it Latino? I come join your business group. I’ll come join your entrepreneur group. I’m not going to join a Latino group, because then that means non Latinos are not welcome. Even if you say they are. People immediately feel excluded. So I’m always very hesitant to hear, oh, we have a women’s group. Somebody started a women’s group and for WordPress, you’re familiar with WordPress, right? Yeah. Yeah. So there’s a women’s group for WordPress here. And I was invited and people say, No, no, it’s not just for women you can come to I’m like, Well, yeah, but then why don’t you just call it WordPress like, why is that you have women in there? Well, because there’s a safe space for for women like okay, well, I don’t feel like that’s necessary because when I go to WordPress site WordPress meetups, for example, everybody’s There is even an equal in there speakers are women speakers that are men. And the same way I feel, it’s always hard for me to swallow when I see a qualifier in front of a group. So when I hear Black Lives Matter, it’s, I really have to work on that because I’ve seen what BLM as a group does. And I also say, well, but all lives and I get I get why that’s offensive to some people. But my goal would be, like you said, to reduce the police force, to get communities to talk more to each other. And I think at the end of the day, money drives a lot of this because money is food, right? Money is food and shelter. And if you don’t have that, that drives you to do things things that are not normally in your book of, Oh, I should actually do this today, I should mug a guy down the street for his wallet like that’s not in your, you know, in that neighborhood that you came from is if people had money to go and buy their groceries and by pay their rent and stuff, they wouldn’t have to do that. Like, I don’t think people are bad by nature. I think people are good by nature. And they turned bad or tribal. For need, you know. So I would love to talk more about like the symbols, the symbols,

Sam Dey
improvising. I feel like a point. Yeah, I feel like anyway, it’s important to be associated with groups that relate to you. And the reason why I say that is I do feel like that sort of so for example, your expert your opinions and experiences are slightly different to mine. Whereas I’m definitely part of groups and my friendship circle and group as well. They kind of have a similar mindset to me, they’ve experienced similar things to me. And I can say things that won’t be as controversial. So like the way we saw I had a group meeting not too long ago, with a lot of my, you know, black entrepreneur friends, and we just spent a lot of time just grieving. And for people who wouldn’t believe or don’t believe that this is a race issue, I wouldn’t be able to express how I feel in my emotions because even though there are people who would, who would, you know, say that it’s not a race issue. There are still people who truly believe it is and who are truly hurt in in a unique way. So for me, it was it was nice being in a group whereby I didn’t have to justify anything. I could literally just share my emotions. And everybody else is showing their emotions. And from a perspective of “I understand you,” I feel the same thing and you don’t feel like, you know, you don’t feel, you know, out of place. And I think similar to women as well, women, they just go through things that we don’t, and that we’ll never understand. So I feel like having a support group of people who, who know what you’re going through is, is important. And we’re not often represented a lot as well, especially in the corporate world. So I can I often go to, like work meetings and stuff like that. And not only am I the black, only black in the room, but oftentimes, I’m the only black in the whole 300 400 person building for a lot of corporate companies. And so, that is quite it can be quite intimidating it can be. It can be a lot of things and you know, some of my other friends who are entrepreneurs as well. They experienced that too. So you need to have a way I can

Oscar Gonzalez
just interrupt you for a second, the positive way to look at that, too is like the best things come in small packages, right?

Sam Dey
Yeah, I mean, I, I do I do see it as a as a bad thing. But I also I do take the positives from it. But at the same time, it’s nice to be able to have a group of people I can speak to about that that opened up.

Oscar Gonzalez
Now I understand that part

Sam Dey
and not and you know, not the day, I think there’s a time to, to kind of have different opinions and to debate but there’s also a time to be with people who you feel like you can just relax and say, what you what is really on your heart without being judged by that.

Oscar Gonzalez
I totally agree. I was specifically talking about like public groups and stuff about that when I mentioned that. I definitely the Black Lives Matter. No, no, no, like, not like Black Lives Matter. Well, yeah, I mean, Black Lives Matter as a group. Not as a concept. Not as a thing, but But but that’s why I brought up the other examples. Because I get, I’ve been asked time and time again come and speak at this like Latin, you know, business intrapreneur group. It’s like, No, I won’t. I just can’t because I feel like I am contributing to a division. Now I feel it’s like a Latino support group for business owners, and it’s okay, we meet in private. It’s kind of the purpose is what you just said, to have a place where we understand our culture and talk about that great. But the moment you this is completely kind of side tangent to what we’re talking about. So it’s not about the black lives matter. But, you know, I was asked to go to Florida to speak at a Latino conference. I’m like, this is a public conference in a huge space. It’s being advertised everywhere. I just don’t feel comfortable being a part of something like hey, we have our own little group. To me that’s exclusionary, and that’s not inclusive of all colors and races and genders and stuff and I feel like sometimes we inadvertently create those divisions by trying to create more balance, say how you know, we’re missing this kind of group and then we create that group. But that group ends up being exclusive. Yes, there’s, there’s a foodie group around here. Something like Asian professional foodies or something I can’t get in I’ve applied for, because they go to eat the great places, and I want to go and hang out with people and do my videos and do my recording for foodie videos. They will not allow me in… and I’m married to an Asian woman. But I’m not allowed in. So you know, yeah, I mean, that kind of stuff.

Sam Dey
Yeah, we experienced a similar thing. Like I was part of a thing called YouTube black.

Sam Dey
Okay. Oh, yeah. I heard Yeah.

Sam Dey
And it was just it was just black creators that were kind of we were chosen to do to basically work to go to YouTube space for a whole week. Yes. And that was very controversial on Twitter as well as very much. And I think it was it was actually quite nice because it was one of the very first times ever where I had been in a in a in a business setting where all of us were black because I’m so used to going into business conferences and stuff like that where I’m the only black person or there’s only two or three black person people. So it was a nice being able to actually network with people who look like me people who understood understood me, people came from the same background as me. And I think that is what was important to me as well like that was the first was the first time and I think that there are examples so all of my friends who work with they work in various different like industries, all of them hire management is just everyone’s white. There’s very, very few of my friends who I know have a higher management that is like even 20% black, it’s, it might be like the one black person out of, I don’t know, like 100 managers or something like that. So a lot of the people in the UK who are actually pulling the strings, so we’re talking politics, we’re talking higher management, we’re talking media. We’re talking, you know, people who are the biggest, the biggest television networks like BBC, ITV, all of them, who who control the media, mainly white people, you know, and it’s like, that means that there’s one race that is more or less controlling the narrative of what happens across the UK.

Oscar Gonzalez
What is more, I mean, I don’t know if you know, exactly or close, what is the racial breakdown in the UK?Do you know?

Sam Dey
So I don’t I don’t know it. I don’t know it like, extremely well, maybe I should. Maybe I could Google it… I know that… okay, racial breakdown UK. So black makeup, white makeup 87% of the population.

Oscar Gonzalez
That’s Yeah, that’s a big difference from here. So I know normally,

Sam Dey
this is just a random website, so it might be like me. Yeah, it might it might be might be around about that. But yeah, I know it’s I know, it’s like very majority white.

Oscar Gonzalez
Yeah. Now I know, I know. I know, whenever if I bring this up, or if I’ve questioned this, it sounds super cold. And I don’t mean it to be like that. But if, let’s say that statistic for true, so that’s like 87% right. So wouldn’t that explain that out of 100 people like almost 90 of them are white in a in an organization.

Sam Dey
No, not not as much. So when, for example, I went to I’m not sure if you’ve heard of an organization called EY.

Oscar Gonzalez
I know when he was in the States, but I don’t think that’s the same.

Sam Dey
Yes. Like it’s like a really huge corporate company here in the UK. So you will see a lot of

Oscar Gonzalez
Is it one of the big five? no, from accounting

Sam Dey
I think so yeah…

Oscar Gonzalez
so yeah, oh, yes. Earnst & Young EY.

Sam Dey
Yeah, yeah. Yeah. Earns & Young. Yeah, yeah. So I went, I went there last year to do some project work with them. And a lot of the black people that you do that you do see a lot of black people working for these organizations, but the position that they hold, which is the issue, so a lot of the times there’ll be the cleaners, there’ll be the security guards, you know, and when when it’s when you get up to higher management, you don’t you don’t see any of us. So I think that’s that’s where that’s where the issue lies.

Oscar Gonzalez
So you don’t see 80% white janitors. That’s why you’re saying exactly, I say so. Is this disproportionately unbalanced? Not not proportionately balanced. In other words, you it would be normal to see, hey, there’s two black janitors, but there’s eight white janitors, and then there’s two black receptionists on a white receptionist, that would be normal. What you’re seeing what you’re seeing is the opposite at the bottom of the pyramid. And as you go up, it reverses.

Sam Dey
Yeah, it becomes a lot, a lot more white. And I think Piers Morgan, I’m not sure if you know about Morgan, but he’s like a TV presenter here in the air. He’s quite controversial. But even he was saying like, there’s only there’s only one person in the studio right now. Like there’s there’s a there’s like a clip on YouTube where he’s talking about there’s only one black person here in this whole studio right now as we’re filming. And then he’s kind of speaking to the to the black person who is there and he’s like, asking him why is that why is there no more black people here? Why is there not more diversity here? And I think there’s definitely kind of like a ceiling and I’m obviously not saying that black people should be the majority because they’re not the majority, right, you know, in the population, but there should there should be a percentage, at least, you know, whether it be 10% or 20% or 15%. that are in our in higher management. And it’s just, yeah, yeah.

Oscar Gonzalez
So do you think there’s some… So there’s only kind of two, two answers I can see as to why that is. One would be there’s some insidious plot to keep you out of it, and to a systematic, right. So do you think there’s a third option? Or..

Sam Dey
I think it’s, I think it’s a combination of both and, like racism is really subtle. But I feel like we have to start calling it where it isn’t so we can get to the root of it. So obviously, I’m self employed. So and I have been for so many years now that I don’t really face it. As much as some of my my peers do. But for example, my mum who she started In a managerial position in a very huge organization, I’m not gonna say the name just in case it goes anywhere. But it was a very, very big organization. And they had no black managers when she became manager of that, a manager of the organization. And they actually had a meeting, where they said, Oh, we filled the new manager position. You know, this lady is incredible. She’s got all of the experience and everything we need. There’s only one issue, and that’s that she’s black. And that’s something that someone said in the meeting with her and like, she wasn’t in the meeting. That was the that was the feedback. Actually, I need to ask her actually, I’m not sure if she was in I don’t think she was in the meeting. But that would that was what was fed back to her. So I feel like we’ve become really good at knowing, being politically correct. So someone wouldn’t say that now. Probably like this is this is probably like, I don’t know, maybe. I’m 27. Now so that was that was probably like 20 years ago. Sure, so I don’t feel like someone would be as comfortable to boldly say that, especially with like social media, and the rise of like, mobile phones as well. Someone could be recorded that could go everywhere you everything. So I don’t feel like it’s as in your face as it was 20 years ago. Sure. I do still feel like it’s present.

Oscar Gonzalez
But then… what do you do think it’s better today than it was 10, 20, 30, 50 years ago?

Sam Dey
Hundred percent.

Sam Dey
You know. I feel like I feel like a lot of the civil rights movements in America. And we had a lot of similar demonstrations here in the UK. You know, in the ninety.. when my granddad came here in, in the in the 60s, there were a lot of protests in the 60s and in the in the 70s. That led to a lot of laws being passed. The Self Defense Law, for example, was only I think it was passed in 1970s here off of the back of someone being racially attacked a ratial attack that happened in the UK and then that law was passed, because they’ll cause cause similar to to now there were like, you know, people protesting and riots going on. And then off the back of that new laws are passed and opinions were changed. So I feel like history seems to kind of be repeating itself something major happens, protests happen, and then laws are passed and gradually getting better and getting better, if that makes sense. So…

Oscar Gonzalez
Yeah, no, I feel I feel like it is, if you were to I, I kind of have to wrap it up a little bit. So yeah, but this is what I would ask anybody because I don’t know if it’s the same in the UK, but here. A lot of a lot of groups want to not only improve things for themselves, so like, like Black Lives Matter, for example, take that as a group, like the organization that I told you I’m against, not to not the concept, but a lot of the groups at You know, let’s let’s dismantle America and start from scratch. And I, to me, that’s counterproductive. Because those, this is a question I would ask any of them like, Okay, fine. So this is so bad, you want to throw it out the window right now? Let’s pause for a second and say, and, and this is kind of the question for you not, I already know the answer, because you already give to me, but what country and time would you pick to live if you could pick in time and place? And they always come back to it right now. And then in the United States, or maybe in your case in the UK? Because historically, there’s never been a better time for anybody.

Sam Dey
Yeah.

Oscar Gonzalez
And a better time, economically, racially, all that opportunity-wise. And yeah, I admit that, in many ways, we have a long way to go. But I would not pick, I would not pick, you know, 1914 Russia, you know, I wouldn’t pick any other country right now, I wouldn’t pick, you know, I wouldn’t pick like a any. I don’t know, like you said, I don’t know who’s gonna see this later. But there isn’t any other country that I can think of from all the history I’ve learned. That I’d say no, no, I want to be 100 years ago in that country, I just don’t like I think this is the best time to be alive. Technology wise, opportunity wise. I mean, you have your own business for years. And just like me, all you really need is that device in front of you, that laptop, a clean background, like you have, maybe your microphone if you want to be fancy, but you know, you really that’s all you need. And you can run that. No other time, have we been able to do that. I mean, with the exception of the past 5, 10 years, but 30 years ago, no, you couldn’t you couldn’t start a business 30 years ago, unless you had tons of capital and the racial boundaries were even greater than, you know, to say Oh, Well, no, the banks aren’t going to lend you anything because you’re black. I know that that was the case, you know? And then the amount of money you would need, oh, no, I need 100 grand to start a business right now you need three grand and you start a business, you’re off to the races with a couple of grand you start a website by a little bit inventory or something. And a couple of grand, you could start a business I mean, so, I mean, would you agree that you would pick now and where you are? Yeah,

Sam Dey
yeah, that’s, that’s one thing we agree on. I mean, yeah, hundred percent. I think. We’ve definitely come leaps and bounds from when my granddad was here. And there were signs telling him no blacks. You know, we’ve definitely come a long way. So, but like you said, there’s still a long way to go. And, yeah, I’m happy that we are able to have this conversation. It’s definitely a lengthy one. Which is why it’s gone long. And you know, thank you for that as well. No, yeah, we’re we’re clocked at two (hours) and minutes and 15 recording and we started like, maybe 15 minutes before.

Sam Dey
So yeah, yeah. You… Yeah, it’s an important one to have. So I appreciate you, you know, taking the time as well to have this chat, you know,

Oscar Gonzalez
and I appreciate you taking it too and then also knowing what you had to say, you know, I’ve had some conversations where people just completely emotional and they got upset if I asked the wrong question and you have completely know, I mean, you know what to answer how to answer it. I think we disagree very slightly on a few, like minor details, but for the most thing for the most, the big picture, I think we agree. Yeah. I wish more people would have this conversation. I’m glad you, you were okay recording. So zoom will process it. It’ll take a little while. And as soon as it processes I’ll let you have the file and if you want to upload it to your channel, you can upload it to mine, do whatever you want with it. And then yeah, it’s I think it’s, I think other people watching this may also understand that this is something that’s necessary.

Sam Dey
Yeah, definitely. Oh, definitely. alright man…

Oscar Gonzalez
I appreciate your time. I appreciate all the all the stuff you’ve told me I, there’s some things I didn’t know, that I have to look into and basically learn more because I mean, there’s always something that we don’t know, that changes perspective, even if there’s one degree, you get to make adjustments, and I think it’s the willingness to make those adjustments that makes us better. So 100% thanks so much for your time, dude. And then we’ll be in touch soon. Yeah.

Sam Dey
Awesome. All right. Take two Take it easy. Okay.

Oscar Gonzalez
Talk to you soon.

Sam Dey
Aright bye.

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