The nip-it-in-the-bud fantasy that animates official anti-racism flies in the face of any intelligent understanding of how children develop. It feeds off the notion that social change can be gently engineered via ‘early years’ interventions that somehow cut out prejudice (or add in self-worth).
Children are viewed as hapless and helpless — permanently at risk from a cloying racism ingrained in both society at large and ‘the parents’ (typically denigrated as tabloid reading trolls). (…)
The obsession of older generations with sealing everyone into ethnic or religious boxes (an obsession shared by anti-racists and racists alike), and the endless hand-wringing over what is or might be racist or culturally offensive, is increasingly regarded as archaic (or just plain annoying) by younger people.
As one 14-year-old Bangladeshi girl commented to the Generation 3.0 video-box, ‘we’re kids, we’re growing up… I think the older generation just need to be quiet!’.