ABC's Janai Norman Braces Her Kids for Racial Prejudice
American journalist and multi-platform correspondent at ABC News, Janai Norman shared a heartfelt Instagram post and a YouTube video describing the struggles that come with being Black.
Norman Is Already Preparing Her Son to Face Future Struggles
On June 4, 2020, Norman took to Instagram to discuss one of the most crucial topics — Black Lives Matter. In the post's caption, she vocalized the problem most Black parents face — how to tell their children they might be treated differently just because of the color of their skin.
How do I tell the most beautiful little boy I’ve ever laid eyes on that one day someone may treat him differently simply because of how he looks?
Norman talked about her experience in a YouTube video on Good Morning America’s channel. One morning, Norman noticed her son was paying attention to the news and was observing the details regarding the George Floyd protests — the widespread movement that took place following the brutal killing of an African-American man.
Norman, who always filtered what her son watched on the TV, was questioning herself if the 2-year-old should know about these events or not. But it was the reality of the world he occupied; hence she allowed her son to watch the news.
When her son started asking her questions about the protests, Norman couldn’t reply to her son. He was asking questions like why people were chanting and crying.
Norman, who has had numerous discussions and conversations about race and inequality, couldn’t answer her son’s innocent question. She confessed she stuttered and cried, unable to find the words to answer her son’s simple question.
The journalist had a hard time processing his questions, and she tried her best to explain them to the young kid. In tears, she held up her arm, showed him the color of his skin, and described that people who looked like them and had their skin color might be treated differently.
Norman knew she would need to have this conversation with him eventually; however, she didn’t expect to be doing this when he is just 2. As a Black woman, Norman said she had faced all kinds of experiences she wouldn’t wish upon her kids.
The anchor wrote about her son on Good Morning America’s website, expressing her concerns for his future. She has vouched to explain everything he needs to know regarding discrimination and inequality the society might impose on him.
I will always look at my son and see this little boy with a megawatt smile, big, bright eyes, and a contagious giggle. And as much I wish everyone else did, too, I know society won’t and I can’t protect him from that.
Norman has already started grooming him in the best way possible. She and her husband have conversations to provide their kids with love and validation. They want their kids to understand that society may look at them differently, but they should never allow that to impact how they look and feel about themselves.