BurnBright on HuffingtonPost: Ozioma tells her childhood story of being bullied

February 24, 2015
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Ebola Bullying

“Go back home Ebola!” the group of middle school students chanted as they brutally punched and kicked 11 year old Amadou and his 13 year old older brother, Pape over and over again.

As I learned more about the harsh justice that was inflicted upon the sons of Senegalese born Ousmane Drame on October 24, 2014, in what has now come to be known as the Ebola Beatings, it conjured painful memories of my own youth…

I remember being a young Nigerian girl roaming through the Bronx, braids flowing free, contemplating what life had in store for me. I was a dreamer. I still am. However, there were many instances when my dreams felt the brutality of a world more passionate with “othering” me as an African, than seeking to understand who I was and what I had to offer.

In the early 90’s while wearing African Medallions was considered being in vogue, actually BEING African was not. African Booty Scratcher was an insult often hurled my way. Even worse, were the reggae-style songs the local bullies sang to me as I made my way towards the entrance of the apartment building where I lived. The weight of such daily bullying took its toll on me. I began to seek haven at the local library, staying later and later. Each day I would walk to the corner of my block to see if the perpetrators were still standing outside. If they were, I would walk all the way back to Fordham Library and wait until the coast was clear, praying to be rescued from the mean streets of Marion Ave.

“Read the rest on HuffintonPost below is the hyperlink”




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