Saturday 18 November 2017

Racist slurs have hurt family and me – minister

Christiane Taubira: spoke of pain after being compared to a monkey
Christiane Taubira: spoke of pain after being compared to a monkey

Rory Mulholland

France's black justice minister, who has been compared to a monkey in a series of racist slurs, has spoken about the pain she has suffered, as well as the hurt it has caused her children.

Christiane Taubira, a 61-year-old minister from French Guiana who in 2002 became the first black woman to run for the French presidency, said the comparisons were "very hard" on her four children, who are now in their 20s and 30s.

"The problem is above all for those close to me who see all that," she told 'Le Parisien' newspaper in an interview. "It is very hard, very aggressive as an image for my children."

Her words came as France's 'Elle' put her on its front page and named her woman of the year, just a week after she featured on the front of a far-right magazine next to the slogan "Clever as a monkey, Taubira gets her banana back", a play on the French slang for smile.

Ms Taubira, who is divorced, has been subjected to a series of attacks in recent months, including being compared to a chimpanzee by a Front National politician and having a banana waved at her by children at a same-sex marriage protest.

Irish Independent

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