About that question mark on the letterboard in George Floyd Square

by Rashmee

Posted on April 23, 2021


/ LANGUAGE After the conviction of the white former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin for the murder of unarmed black man George Floyd, the clearest, most obvious reaction was linguistic restraint. So, in George Floyd square, the renamed area where he died in Minneapolis, activists cheered as soon as the verdict was read. But they … Continue reading “About that question mark on the letterboard in George Floyd Square”

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That Dutch election inspired hope…but not because of who won outright

by Rashmee

Posted on April 17, 2021


/ FAITH, HOPE… It seems awfully long ago (April 2 actually) that Dutch prime minister Mark Rutte survived a no-confidence vote after being caught up in a scandal that threatened to end his 11 years in office. And the March 17 Dutch  election seems like ancient history. In managing the crisis-defying feat of winning,  Mr … Continue reading “That Dutch election inspired hope…but not because of who won outright”

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Like any business, the Royal Family must supply the goods that keep it profitable

by Rashmee

Posted on March 11, 2021


/IT’S THE BUSINESS  The truest analysis of the Harry and Meghan interview with Oprah has to be in business terms. Meghan called the British Royal Family “the Firm”. And it is. It is an institution that sells the idea of itself to remain rich and relevant. Mark Landler put it exceedingly well in The New … Continue reading “Like any business, the Royal Family must supply the goods that keep it profitable”

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Knees, guns and votes: US race relations in 3 words

by Rashmee

Posted on September 9, 2020 / The National


Race relations can be a fraught subject anywhere but especially so in the US right now. The long hot summer of national reckoning on race and policing has slipped into an autumn of continuing anguish and defiance. Americans’ view of the relations between black and white races is now the most negative of any year … Continue reading “Knees, guns and votes: US race relations in 3 words”

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Trump has said nothing about Jacob Blake & his family’s pain. That tells us all we need to know

by Rashmee

Posted on August 26, 2020


Today (Wednesday, Aug. 26) the international news media is making much of US First Lady Melania Trump’s emollient speech to the Trump convention. The BBC reported that Mrs Trump “made a plea for racial unity”. “Like all of you, I have reflected on the racial unrest in our country,” she said, “Stop the violence and … Continue reading “Trump has said nothing about Jacob Blake & his family’s pain. That tells us all we need to know”

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The race for justice: will we see meaningful change after Black Lives Matter protests?

by Rashmee

Posted on June 21, 2020 / The Focus


All the activity — and angst — over racial injustice needs to be put in context. Nearly a month after the death in Minneapolis of George Floyd, an unarmed black man, at the hands of a white police officer, protest marches are starting to peter out. But calls for broad structural change are growing louder, in the United States, … Continue reading “The race for justice: will we see meaningful change after Black Lives Matter protests?”

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Reading George Orwell can help us understand Boris Johnson

by Rashmee

Posted on June 16, 2020 / The Focus


In 1946, a year before the British were forced to grant India its independence, George Orwell bemoaned the decline of the English language. In an essay titled ‘ Politics and the English language ‘, Orwell called out the “sheer humbug” that passed for political speech and writing, the “pretentious, Latinized style” and deliberate use of … Continue reading “Reading George Orwell can help us understand Boris Johnson”

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Tearing down Fawlty Towers won’t promote racial justice

by Rashmee

Posted on June 13, 2020 / The Focus


  What links the 1970s sitcom Fawlty Towers and the statue of a 17th-century slave trader? Both have been forcibly removed from view as the UK gets caught up in an energised debate raging in the US and Europe on the representation of colonisation, enslavement and racial prejudice. Their treatment is debatable. On June 11, … Continue reading “Tearing down Fawlty Towers won’t promote racial justice”

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America’s most trusted dictionary will redefine racism

by Rashmee

Posted on June 12, 2020 / The Focus


Merriam-Webster has been in the business of word definitions for the better part of 200 years. Now, in a nod to the changing national and international discourse, America’s most trusted online dictionary  plans to revise its entry on racism . Merriam-Webster will now acknowledge that racism is systemic. One of the dictionary’s editors has admitted: “Omitting any … Continue reading “America’s most trusted dictionary will redefine racism”

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America is being ‘Africanised’, says Africa

by Rashmee

Posted on June 8, 2020 / The Focus


It was The Elephant, a four-year-old African website, that made the connection between George Floyd and Mohamed Bouazizi. “The Tunisian hawker who set himself on fire in an act of protest against police corruption and ill-treatment” ignited the 2010 Arab Spring, wrote Kenyan journalist Rasna Warah. Floyd’s death at the hands of a white police … Continue reading “America is being ‘Africanised’, says Africa”

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Rashmee has lived and worked in several countries in the past decade, including Afghanistan, India, Haiti, Tunisia, the UAE, US and UK