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Letter by Samoya, Year 9

Dear Sir Olaudah Equiano,

I write to tell you about the world you never lived to see.

Our fellow black brothers and sisters can walk down the street, with their heads held high, feeling proud of their race and African roots. We can read and write freely, expressing ourselves and telling our stories. I truly understand why writing is political.

However, slavery only ended to that extent. Child labour, sex trafficking and many other forms of slavery have come about. Some people still feel the need to be racist against us and others because we are a different colour.

This is the 21st century. Young black brothers are killing each other. It seems the brutality of slavery and how hard yourself and others fought for their life to be better, has failed to stop the slave masters' manipulation taking its toll. This is the 21st century. Africa remains the same; it's not the richest of continents. We have been deprived of our innovations; they have stolen the precious gold, and destroyed the heritage and culture of our people. How can a country with so much gold be so poor? They said we were uncivilised, but they were truly describing themselves. The jealousy and animosity they had against us came out aggressively and incarcerated us.

People are bleaching their skin to be a lighter shade. Especially the younger generation. Their minds have been poisoned by the slave masters. In Jamaica, and other countries, if you're too dark you are denied jobs, or get the worst of jobs. This is the 21st century.

Our fellow black brothers and sisters have made some marvellous inventions. Traffic lights, helicopters, blood banks and many more. We are the singers, actors, surgeons, lawyers and athletes. We are so much more. We are black people with so much to be proud of. Black is beauty, black beauty.

It would've been my honour and pleasure to have met you. You are a significant man in the history of abolition. You are a role model for all of us. You are spoken vastly of. I can't imagine how you'd feel to see the world today. There is so much to see and feel. Words aren't enough to really exemplify how grateful we are and how much you've done. All we can say is thank you so much for all you have done for us.

Yours faithfully,

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