International cricket is back in a bio-secure bubble after a coronavirus forced break of 116 days. But when cricket returned, the players, support staff, and even the umpires took a knee in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.
Both teams also observed a minute’s silence to mark the victims of the coronavirus and also former West Indies bating great Everton Weekes, who died last week.
The black lives matter movement has gained currency in the aftermath of death of George Floyd in the US on May 25.
Earlier as various resumed after the hiatus, football clubs across leagues were seen making the gesture to raise awareness against racial discrimination.
Education key to eradicating racial discrimination
Former West Indies bowler Michael Holding speaking on the pre-match Sky sports show underscored the role of education in eradicating society of racial discrimination.
“Education is important unless we want to continue living the life that we are living and want to continue having demonstrations every now and again,” Holding said.
He also elaborated that by education he wants people look into history to understand how the dehumanisation of black race began.
“When I say education, I mean going back in history.
What people need to understand is that this thing stems from hundreds of years ago.
The dehumanization of the black race is where it started. Society hasn’t got over something like that.
You educate both sides – black and white.”
Need to teach both sides of history
He also emphasized that it is difficult to eradicate racial discrimination if only one race is presented in good light and suggested that both sides of history need to be taught.
“History is written by the conqueror not by those that are conquered. History is written by people who do the harm not by the people who get harmed. We need to go back and teach both sides of history,” Michael Holding said in a pre-match show on Sky Sports.
Former England women’s cricketer Rainford-Brent feels that the society must come together and decide on a forward-thinking, positive vision of equality that can effect fundamental change.
“Unless people in power connect with and understand and feel what it is like to be on the side of limited power, to not get access to opportunities, to know you are significantly less likely to be hired and significantly more likely to be stopped and searched, to be oppressed, we won’t progress.
“It can’t be a ‘black person’s problem’, it has got to be everyone’s problem. We have got to want a society that is representative and supports people from different backgrounds,” Rainford-Brent said.
Earlier in the day, England’s players wore training t-shirts with the names of key workers as a sign of respect for their hard work in bringing together cricket.