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After living here for several years I have become somewhat accustomed to the different charges for attractions for Thais and for foreigners. I myself as I foreigner have taken delight in paying local price at Chang Mai Zoo and the Aquarium at Bangkok , with a quick flick to open my wallet and there we go my Thai drivers ID and local price please.
But, something sinister and dark happened last weekend, which really made me question this policy. Something happened which belonged in the stone age with animal skin fur clothes and wooden clubs ! Something happened that made me write for the first time in a long time.
Racism comes in many forms, but make no mistake , it should never be accepted or tolerated. Never. To achieve a better society, we must all strive to accept each other, to try to understand each other and importantly to never judge someone based on their skin colour.
What has made me so annoyed? So Angry? What has riled me? Made me seethe? Made me want to tell you ?
Well, last weekend after a successful soccer tournament in Phuket (Samui United Academy won 2 trophies) the coaches and parents decided to reward the boys with an hour visit to The Splash Park in Phuket. They checked the admission price , they checked the boys could go in with their football shorts ( yes so long as no zippers ! football shorts with zippers ? ) On arrival 40 children plus parents were met with the following news, different prices for the kids based on their skin colour !! Those that were dark were classed as Thai , those which were ha sip ha sip or white would have to pay more.
Now call me old fashioned, but since when does the colour of the skin determine where you are born? Many of the children who were viewed as non-Thai actually were 100% Thai, in fact some of the 100% white children were born here and actually want to represent Thailand at Football. They call themselves Thai and are proud of it
The Children had shown by their example a far better future can lie ahead. They had just spent two days playing football together as one team, they demonstrated that racism is not something you are born with but something you are taught.
Thankfully the parents and coaches made the decision to walk away in disgust and I decided to write this article to highlight a very serious issue. To move forward we can not judge a persons nationality on their skin colour.
Thailand and Samui in particularly is a diverse place I hope that these children remember their friends for what they were soccer school team mates and not for the colour of their skin. I hope some of them go on to represent Thailand , perhaps then others will take note even a “Farang” cam be Thai