Welcome to the 26th issue of The Funambulist. We decided to make it for you kids! Perhaps you’ve seen a parent or an adult friend read this magazine before and wondered what it was about. Well, this time the tables are turned and they’ll have to patiently wait till you’re done with it to start their reading. How do you like that?
During all of 2019, we have made five issues that talks about the way many people in the world are fighting against injustice that they or their friends are living. This is the last one of the series and this time we wanted to talk to you! You might have seen the previous texts in this issue, written by Rachel, Rosamund, Erika, Alexane, and Rooha, who are all just a few years older than you. The work they’re doing for a better future could be something you do in ten years from now; perhaps even less!
Like many people we have seen young people fight for climate justice against a system created by adults who always care more about being richer and more powerful, than actually to reduce the way the climate is changing. We think that it is a very important fight. But we also think that we need to fight it with a deep understanding of how humans are far from equal in this world. Countries in the North dominate others in the South. White people dominate societies in the North, after having stolen countless lands and resources from Indigenous peoples. Men impose their rules on women and on people who don’t feel like they belong to one gender or to the gender that was given to them at birth. We’ll talk about all this in this issue. Depending on your relationship to the stories that you’ll read, you will find them either simple or complicated to understand. Perhaps it will put some words on some feelings you’ve been having for years.
If, on the contrary, you don’t understand, you can ask an adult. But remember that adults are like everyone else: sometimes they do not know, sometimes they make mistakes, sometimes they are wrong. The adults who created the stories in the next pages (sometimes helped by kids) do not think that they know the truth. As for us (Léopold, Margarida and Caroline) who invited them to write, we do not think either that we know the truth. It might seem this way sometimes because it happens often that people do not try to understand our ideas and we need to speak loudly about them. This makes us look like we are absolutely certain of everything we are talking about but sometimes we also have doubts. Yet we know that we can only evolve through learning from each other. Our contributors do not think that they know the truth but they know what is injustice when they see it, and they are passionate about fighting against it.
Patricia and Hai Minh will tell you the story of how a cat saved Patricia’s mother’s life during the war. Cathryn and Boniswa will talk about the racist system of South Africa and how Black people have learned to love who they are despite the government being against them. Paula and Claudia will tell you the story of the Indigenous queen of Ayiti who saw Christopher Columbus and his men arriving on her land. Adel and Charlie will talk about gender and how there is so much more than just girls and boys. Yiling will tell you her story; she comes from an island in the middle of the Pacific ocean; her family is from there but also from China and France. Aram will teach you how to make your own banner if you want to go to a protest. And finally, Amandine and Natacha will describe what it means to be a Black kid if your parents are white. Also, did you see the cover? It’s a drawing made by Lisolomzi Pikoli, a fantastic artist who lives in Johannesburg, in South Africa.
Feel free to choose which text you want to start with; there is no particular order you have to read in. We wish you an excellent read and hope that you will learn from these stories as much as we did ourselves.■