Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Why do you hate me?



I debated about sharing this on my blog, but eventually realized that it needed to be addressed.

A couple days ago, I was walking in my neighborhood when a school bus drove past me. A teenage boy rolled down his window and shouted at me, "Go back to India, c-nt!"

Already feeling crappy, my hurt feelings and shock took a back seat to my anger. I chased the school bus down and jumped on board. I got the name of the kid from the bus driver and found out what school he attended. When I got home, I called the school bus company and the high school principal.

Yesterday, I met with the assistant principal of the high school. They are going to review the bus video and then suspend the student.

I'm glad I nailed the punk, but I'm still bothered by the incident.

I'm pretending not to be. I brushed it off to Rian (who was there when it happened). I never even told my parents because I didn't think it was worth it.

But it does bother me a lot. This kid, without knowing anything about me, felt hatred towards me because of the color of my skin. It is the first time in my life I have been the victim of a racist attack of any kind.

He has no idea that I can't "move back" to a country I have never been to. He has no idea that I've never even been outside the United States at all. He has no idea I'm not even fully Indian. He has no idea I don't know any language other than English. He doesn't care either. He sees a brown person and believes what he wants.

But the attack wasn't personal. It wasn't against one person. It was against an entire nation. It makes me wonder why this kid hates Indians so much. Did his dad lose his job to an Indian? Did an Indian kid make fun of him earlier in life? Does he hate Indian food? Or maybe he simply hates immigrants in general and assumed I was one of them?

If it's the immigrant card, then he's an idiot. The United States is a country that is built on immigrants. So unless that kid is a full-blooded Native American, he hates his own kind. He hates his great-great-whatever grandparents who came over on the Mayflower (or, most likely, jumped ship here from various European countries less than 200 years ago). Way to be a traitor to your ancestors, dipshit.

But, of course, that is a theory and I will most likely never know the reason behind the attack. Who knows why people are racist? Who knows why they are sexist? Who knows why they are homophobes? We've come a long way in this world, regarding those areas, but we still have a long way to go.

Let's hope every new generation gets a little more tolerant, and a lot less ignorant.

51 comments:

Vintage Vixen said...

Good for you, hopefully the ill-educated creature will realise what an uninformed idiot he is and steps will be taken to redress the situation.
Of all things I despise it's racism. It's no really a problem where I live as the imigrant population are well established and integrated but I remember having a boyfriend of Asian origin as a teen and being refused entry to pubs and spat at in the street.
One of our aquaintances after a few drinks the other day went into a racist tirade and I had to shout him down. I find it hard to believe in this day and age anyone can discriminate against another being. I assume it's insecurity and the need to convince themselves they are better than someone else.
You should be very proud of what you did, you really are Jennifer Fabulous! xxx

indianmakeupways said...

oh god! tat too a teenage kid???????shocking!!! good tat u acted the way u did. he deserves it! even I had a similar experience when we were in malaysia with my family. we were staying at this hotel and when we were checking out the bell boy refused to carry our bag!!! and he went and dutifully obliged to another european/american(dont know for sure) family and we were the first ones to ask him. I was enraged and wanted to complaint to the hotel management...but my family intervened and told tat anyway we are checking out and they didnt want any hassle. but i was so mortified and to think tat the guy was Asian!!! oh gawd! atleast we belonged to the same community! watever...i guess brown skin speaks for itself!

Amelia is... said...

I am so glad you did decide to post this, what an amazing way of writing you have!

A friend I haven't spoken to in years recently tried to reconnect with me. We had a falling out a while ago but a lot of time has passed and it felt like water under the bridge. Speaking with her though made me realise exactly why I didn't want to be friends with her. She makes disgusting comments about different races and people with disabilities. I am thankful that we started talking again because it has simply reminded me why we should never be friends again. That kind of ignorance is never funny and shouldn't be acceptable. I wouldn't spend your time trying to justify the reasons behind his comment (because there is never an excuse), just hope that your actions have some kind of impact.

Thanks for posting, x

www.ameliais.blogspot.com

Christopher said...

way to stand up for yourself, that is really awesome

sadly brown is the new black in this country, i think progress is slowly being made in some areas but is severely lacking in others

there are a lot more indians in america right now then there were 20 years ago, there are a lot more people from the middle east in america than there was 20 years ago. i hate to lump that all together but i think a big part of the problem is that a lot of people do lump those together, somehow being indian is related to 9/11, i know it doesnt make any sense, but that is the feeling i get around some people. honestly, i'm ashamed, and i know you are too, everyone here should be considered an american, not just those that could easily get into a frat in missouri,

thats enough of a run on sentence for the night, hope i made some kinda sense and i hate that you went through that

karla camille foronda said...

Oh my goodness! That is the reason why I'm afraid of migrating to the states soon. I really hate discrimination of kinds and races. I don't have issues with other kinds but some people are really like that.
thank you for sharing this. It's good you teach the kid a lesson:))

stay stronger:) God bless you!

try to visit my blog too.thank you:))
karlaforonda.blogspot.com

Ania Alonso said...

Great blog!!

DiamondsandTulle said...

Oh wow Jen! I'm stunned by that type of racism which still is present today. It's shocking and I can only imagine how you would have felt. I would probably feel similar to you, being born in this country if someone told me to go back - it's hurt a lot. I only hope he gets reprimanded and more educated by his parents. I feel like much of that starts at home. I'm proud you did what you did - that took major guts.

xx Vivian @ http://diamondsandtulle.blogspot.com

ROSITANEGRA said...

What a punk ass. People as ignorant as that boy make me so angry. You know racist's are the ones who truely are illterate and obviously do not know history. They just go by what the majority did in the old days.
I have also been a victim of a similar situation. I am a latin american girl, born in Australia, living in Australia. Now the typical Australian has white skin, blonde hair and freckles and i also got victimised once when i was walking across the street, a group of girls and guys yelled out telling me to go back to my country because i was a dirty wog.
1. I am not wog i am HISPANIC
2. I probably speak better english then their yobbo slang
and 3. I was born in Australia so i belong here as much as they do.

People like that do not think before they speak. I am glad you bought this up and i am glad that you are keeping strong. Keep your head up, let the haters hate but don't let it bother you. They are probably just jealous because all they know is their one culture were as we come from different back grounds as well as theirs therefore are able to experience different things at higher levels.

Much love,
and if anyone is going through the same thing, scratch the haters, you do you and be happy in whatever skin you were born with :)

Leia said...

I'm so sorry this happened to you. I really don't understand *why* people are racist and what motivates it. I really wish this world could be a more tolerant and accepting place! I understand when older people who are 'set in their ways' might have a few racist sentiments - maybe attached to wars or whatever - but when young people behave this way? There's really no excuse for it.

P.S. Love you too!

Leia

Imogen said...

I'm pleased you decided to share this because I'm sure there are many people that agree with you and it is a widespread issue that needs addressing. I actually saw your post about this on facebook. I'm so pleased that you followed it up and informed the school. Thats shows character and strength and I'm so proud of you. He shouldn't just be allowed to get away with this sort of thing.

The Shanner of Attention said...

Good for you. This post was well written and I'm really glad you shared it with us. You did a brave thing. Kudos.

Lara Woodbine said...

I'm glad you nailed the little fucker!! Thats terrible. Don't let him put you down as you said he's an idiot!


x

.:JoaNNa:. said...

i'm so proud of you that you stood up for yourself and could nail that little jerk. if it was me in that situation i probably would just go home a.s.a.p and get depressed for the rest of the day. racism sucks indeed and it's inevitable because creatures like that kid just exist. in my home country, my race is a minority and believe me, i know how it feels. you're not alone! let's hope for a better world. stay strong! *hugs*

Robin said...

I'm betting the kid was just an idiot. I think kids sometimes try to test their boundaries and be shocking just to see how it feels. It's likely that the dumbass had no idea what was behind his words.

I'm not saying that to defend him AT ALL, but because it may lessen the feeling of being hated for you. He may be yelling things he doesn't fully get.

In defense of America (and Kansas) in general- this is NOT an everyday occurrence. We're shocked too!

I hope you feel better sweetie. You are a total badass for hunting him down and making sure he gets the error of his ways brought forcibly to his attention.

Haute World said...

Boy, am I glad you chased down that bus. I really hope he does get suspended. He's a teenager, so I assume a lot of his racism stems from peers or what his parents have taught him. Who knows though. As you said it could be anything. I actually think that (ironically) racism is far more prevalent in liberal democratic countries. It might not necessarily be out in the open, but it's there. We definitely still have a long way to go, but I see it all the time - my friend who is of Persian descent gets pulled out of security check every time she goes through the airpor and is questioned thoroughly. She also had severe problems renting apartments based on her name and had to get her boyfriend to apply for her. I can't believe stuff like that can still happen in this day and age.

Josie said...

Jennifer, I'm so proud of you. It takes so much courage to stand up for yourself that way. What a sad, terrible thing for him to do. I can only hope that he learns from this.
xo Josie

Pop Champagne said...

I hate people who say that foreigners are taking their jobs away, the last time I checked Sony, Honda, Hundai and even Ikea are a bunch of foreign companies in the country creating jobs for people. that kid needs a beating.

Tights Lover said...

Wow. What a terrible story.

You probably can never really get the reason why. Even if you got a chance to talk to the kid, he probably doesn't even know why he felt the need to do that, himself. Seeing as he's a teenage boy, part of it was probably some ill-advised attempt to impress his peers. He's probably also a product of his environment. Whether it be friends, parents, classmates, whatever, he's probably heard this shit enough that he's no longer sensitive to it.

As a white male, it often amazes me how much racist/sexist/homophobic stuff I hear in my everyday life. I guess people just assume since I don't fit into any of the offended parties, I wouldn't feel offended hearing such things. As the saying goes 'better to have people think your ignorant than to open your mouth and remove all doubt'.

I honestly don't get why people are wired that way. It's disappointing that we live in a country that's so multi-cultural and yet this sort of sentiment is still so strong.

It probably won't change the way the kid feels, but for what its worth, I hope the kid pays for doing this. Hopefully his classmates realize what an idiot he is too..

it-girl said...

Thank you very much for your comment! Yes, the movie is so cute and funny.

Novelista Barista said...

wow i cant believe that. i am so glad u did that... stupid little brats have no idea wtf is going on in life. i cant believe tht!!! that makes me so mad. go u for putting that little brat in his place. jerk.

on a completely random side note... have u thought about changing the colors on your blog to lighter colors... i was in a huge rut a while ago and i had dark colors on my blog , which i went to every day multiple times.. and i felt like when i changed it to like white or lighter colors.. it helped cheer me up...
i dont know if thats like nuts or anything or if that makes no sense, but i figured id throw it out there.

xoox

Kristin said...

That's disgusting. I have Indian family and the thought of someone saying something so ugly to one of them breaks my heart. I'm glad you chased him down! I shudder to think what he hears at home...

Missy said...

i think you were really great for taking it up with the school! some people just lack education and are jealous. your a beautiful and wonderful person x

Missy
Blending Style, Beauty and Fashion
http://thefashionfusion.blogspot.com

JUST ME said...

I'm so PROUD OF YOU that you laid the smack down on that kid. I'm not sure if I would have had the guts - you GO, mama!

And secondly, I'm so sorry that happened to you. Ignorance is everywhere...but you better believe that kid is forever changed because of your proactive stance.

You made a difference.

Sherin said...

Oh my God. That's so awful and horrible. I can't believe a little brat would say that without knowing anything about you.
Stuff like that really makes me angry. I honestly can't believe someone, in this day and age, can be so ignorant.

Robin said...

So glad I could help. :) Hate to see you down because of someone else's problem.

So glad you found a bit of work! I know this area is murder on English/Journalism majors right now. If you ever wanna get a coffee and whine about it, let me know!

Venus In Virgo said...

YOU GO GIRL!
I was excited reading when you said you chased the bus down, LOL! I would have done the same thing. Good for you for going to his school too, he needs to learn to shut his mouth and respect others! Ignore these fools. You know what they say STUPID IS FOREVER...
you rock for chasing that sucker XOXO

SMASH said...

That is insanity. I bet he was so shocked that you actually stood up for yourself and didn't just shrug off his hateful, ignorant comment. I think it's amazing that you rectified the situation instead of shrugging it off (like most people would)and hopefully he's learned some sort of lesson out of this <3

xx
MILK TEETHS

mariahsmile said...

Bravo to you for going after the bus and then talking to the principal! Many kids aren't taught that this is not a way to act and many of those parents are the ones encouraging it. Hopefully he'll take this lesson to heart and will be a better person for it.

Nikosmommy said...

WOW! Hard to believe this happened! So glad you chased down the bus...you did the right thing.
Honestly this sort of thing seems fairly random, but it's amazing how much underlying racism there still exists in America.
P.S...I lost track of you for a while there, but I`m back...glad you commented!

Vikki said...

I am always surprised by how ignorant and stupid some people can be.
How can one be disrespectful of other people just because of their nationality or the colour of their skin? It's like going back to the bloody Middle Ages!!!
It's sad because I see this happen everyday where I live, immigration in Italy is quite a new phenomenon and so many people have difficulties in understanding it and relating to other cultures...
But you were absolutely great in dealing with this, Jennifer... you surely taught that moron a lesson he won't easily forget!!!

xoxo
Vikki

http://stylometre.blogspot.com

P.S. Thanks a lot for your ever so sweet comments, you are a sweetheart!! <3

Punctuation Mark said...

Immigration is an issue ignorant people just don't want to understand and think this is their country but like you say... it's nobody's but the native americans. politeness, courtesy and good manners somehow have left the building and have been replaced by rudeness, hate (think Sarah Palin) and lack of tolerance... we need to take care of the future generations urgently!

Chic Geek (Devs) said...

Wow. Just wow. This makes me really angry. Argh!! I am so glad that you got him. If it were me I would get so. freaking. angry! Glad that you wrote about this because it is good to bring attention to these ill-behaviored racists.

Tanvi said...

I am so sorry this happened to you! It is disturbing. I do not know why people are racist and how these feelings are seeded in people. I am happy you stood up for yourself and didn't take it laying down! Hugz!

Also, your comment on my post yesterday was really sweet. It touched my heart. I was going to email you. {I still will] but for now, thanks! :)

Alicia said...

As a teacher-in-training I've come to realize that kids are all about the shock and awe. I work with mostly minority students who love to throw out racial slurs because they know it's wrong. These kids are also 7 and 8 years old and have no idea the history and slander behind the words they use.

The kid who yelled at you probably knew that what he was saying was extreme and messed up without even understanding what it would do to you. Good for you for tracking him down and not letting it go. If he learned it from his parents then a strong reprimand from a (hopefully) awesome principal paired up with their son being suspended for being a douche will hopefully teach the whole family a lesson.

btd. said...

I've wondered the same thing since I was in third grade. I had transfered to an all white school and my teacher (who's white) one day had called me a little black bitch. I ended up throwing a chair at her head and I got expelled.
I am sorry you had to go through that. And you're right, he's an idiot because he does not anything about you. Reading this really made me mad, but you know this will change eventually.
This generation will hopefully move toward this change instead of runaway.
:)

Mouthwash said...

Holy crap - have I told you lately that you have balls? Have I?? Because you Jennifer, are as your name already states, FABULOUS. I am so fricking PROUD OF YOU! I am so enamored with the fact that you got on that bus, stood up for yourself and took action. If more people handled their anger in such positive and mature manners, I bet this kind of behavior would stop, or at least lessen.
I am linking this to my facebook fanpage. I want EVERYONE to read this.

Amber

Elizabeth Benfield said...

amen sista!
im sorry you were a victim of someone's ignorance. its really sad to see young people acting like this. most of the time, these are learned behaviors, so he must be around it at home or school. unfortunately, him being suspended will not made him more tolerant. i hope that it doesnt, BUT if it ever happens again, maybe you could actually meet the kid (with the teacher or principle present) and tell him about how you cant move back to a country you have never visited, etc. explain to him how absolutely stupid he/she sounds when they assume they have the world figured out.

LOOK OF STYLE said...

People are that stupid, and I'm sad because it's still a child, I hope to learn the values and over the years done a good person. You do not be sad, think and the people who love you and this great blog!
xoxo


lookofstyle.blogspot.com

anhesty said...

ignorance. i hear it all the time. ppl would make chingchong noises when they see me. i just laugh. cos they will prob be washing my car some day.

Couture Carrie said...

How awful, darling!
Ignorant people can be so hurtful!
Good for you!

xoxox,
CC

Robin said...

Ha, both! Why don't we look each other up on Facebook and go from there?

My name is Dreadpirate Robin Nelson on there(the Dreadpirate bit started as a joke and now it's kind of a thing). Look forward to chatting with you!

Melanie's Randomness said...

Wow. I have to be honest I'm a lil shocked & balled over at this. How dare some kid say that to you!!! I'd back you up a hundred percent for catching that bus & finding out that kid's name because that kid will never do that again. How rude can people be? Bullying is like the stupid "cool" thing kids do now but they need to know its wrong. The U.S. is not one race its many & it always has been. I'm so sorry Jen. I wish I could give you the biggest hug ever. Good for you treating that kid a lesson. Maybe seeing this all happen one kid will see that it was wrong to say that & not do it to anyone else. How would that kid like it that whatever nationality he was someone said Go back to their country. Geez. I'm proud of you soo proud of you for acting against this bullying. So Proud.

Tights Lover said...

Loved the interview...especially the clogs and crocs comments. I couldn't agree more!

Your welcome for the comment. I truly loathe shit like that and I hate the helpless feeling when I see (or hear about) it happening to other people. I know you're having a rough week, but I have a feeling things are going to get better for you.

Your friendship means the world as well :).

Pratishtha Durga said...

Hmmm... It's unfortunate, but I guess we humans are creatures of hatred. It just manifests itself in so many ways. It's passed on, from generation to generation. Racism is just one more form of hatred. Can you believe this? I am an Indian, living in India. But in Mumbai, there is a political faction asking North Indian to "go back". What the...?!
The boy doesn't know the fallout of hatred. And the worst thing is the scar it has left deep inside you. You did the right thing by not letting him go. I hope the school authorities punsh and counsel him.

FashionJazz said...

I am so glad you did what you did hun, hatred is the worst trait any humnan being can have and it makes me sick to my stomach when people from different races treat each other in such a manner...... so sad!

Thank you for posting this, big hugs to you! Mwah xx

Rachel said...

It's really unfortunate that there are still so many racist and insensitive people in this country. And I'm so sorry you had to deal with that, Jennifer. I can't imagine what that must be like.
But I have to say, I'm incredibly proud of you for getting that boy's information. He deserves to be punished because he needs to realize that behavior like that is not acceptable. At all.
And you're right, our ancestors all got here from another country so no one has any right to make comments like that. My family came over here from Germany and others came over during the Potato Famine in Ireland, but that doesn't mean I was ever living in either of those countries!

Fatiha Faulzi said...

I'm sorry that you got in a random racist attack, and were truly offended and hurt by the incident. From where i'm from(a multi-racial Singapore), racism is pretty widespread although subtle. Sometimes it gets under my skin. Hope you'll toughen up and don't let them get to you the next time it happens (i hope it doesn't though0 and know your worth.

xoxo, http://heelsandwedges.blogspot.com

Cafe Fashionista said...

I feel horrible that someone would treat you like that, Jennifer. It's absolutely disgusting that there are still people in this country who are so ignorant and intolerant of different races and cultures. I am glad that you reported the incident; and I hope that this student is dealt with in a manner that teaches him some respect.

Please don't let this incident get you down, Jennifer.

By the way, I love you too!! :)

Audrey Allure said...

I'm glad you went after that bus and he got what he deserved! Hopefully that taught him a lesson. (Although I wouldn't have been brave enough to go after that bus; I'd just walk home & try to forget it lol) I've had some racist comments towards me for being asian although I have no accent or any understanding of any language except for English lol. There are still some ignorant people, but fortunately, overall I think generations are becoming less ignorant and colorblind in terms of race.

Nads said...

Stupid boy!!!

I've been through racism as well...just a small incident at F 21. I don't even know why the hell do other people think Indians are poor? I simply don't understand why people think Indians can't be rich. Infact the forbes list is full of Indians. I wear friggin' diamond rings when I go to the mall. Am not fake. okay! Sorry...but yea..the fact is Racism hurts! What you did was so right! I wish I did something that day. Post that incident I never visited the store again. Would have contacted the management but didn't. I feel bad at not doing anything after all I have helped promote the store before and they would have got that woman fired for being rude to F21 customers! :(

AestheticAnonymous said...

What an a**hole! I'm so sorry that happened to you.
The world is so cruel, and I fear the future and for my children.

You're right about the US being built off of immigrants.
I'm a half breed and proud! :D
You go girl, I'm glad you got him!