Tuesday, March 18, 2008


North Head, originally uploaded by San Nakji.

A teacher from my son's school is leaving. She is an Indian and I have found her nothing but helpful and good to my son. The problem for her is that she has a thick Indian accent which can be difficult to understand.

I was talking to a fellow parent yesterday who was so happy that she was leaving. He complained that he couldn't understand her and he was angry that she hadn't made an effort to try to speak properly.

It took a lot of self control to stop myself from leaping on him and beating him to death with my bare hands. It was truly an ignorant statement and something that I constantly have to battle with.

I think the thing I hate most in this world is racism. It is a deep seeded instinct I feel, but as intelligent human beings it is something that can be overcome. There is no excuse for it.

It really frustrates me that people have to be so ignorant. I mean to believe, and he truly believes this, that she is purposely talking in her accent makes me so angry.

It is even more frustrating when people that I have to deal with on a daily basis or even friends have these attitudes about people who look different from themselves. I mean I could chew them out and beat them down, but I need to keep a good relationship with them. Just like this parent. Damn, it makes me so angry. Anger that could consume me inside.


Matt Morelli said...

Totally agree mate! I am regularly appalled by the number of friends and colleagues who routinely use the term "coloured," even though it was generally considered to be in poor taste in the 70s. And some of these people are my age! They weren't even born when that term was being used. I just want to scream at them, but I don't because I want to continue the relationship with them. But increasingly, I feel I should probably put them straight. Most of them would probably feel embarrassed that they were using such an inappropriate term. I think it's the way they're brought up more than anything.

Cergie said...

San Nakji, so this person will win if you let your bad instincts appear. You must do as you did. You were right
Don't be as they are.
Try to discuss, wars and battles never did ideas progress...

Heather said...

I deal with racism everyday. Living in El Paso, I'm right on the border with Mexico. I get nasty looks because I am white. I get nasty looks because I'm married to a hispanic. It's awful.

I can't stand people who feel they are superior to others. Racism is terrible and like you said, it is unjustified and unnecessary. I don't understand why people act the way they do. GRRRR!

Friar Tuck said...

Sorry for such an unpleasant interaction.

I tend to believe that not being prejudiced is a daily discipline, and not a natural human state. Our nature is to label, judge, and try and be safe. Not being prejudiced takes constant effort and vigilence.

Ashley said...

Ahhh.... you should visit me (and evidently, Heather) in Texas. You 'ain't' seen 'nuthin' .... I gave an employee his performance evaluation the other day and it went well up to the point where he told me his last supervisor pushed him too hard. He decided it was because said supervisor was, "oriental" and had that, "oriental" work ethic! Ackkk!!!! I wanted to tell him, that his former supervisor was not a fine carpet, but a man from Taiwan and that his work ethic was pretty much on par with what I expected from just about anyone. Exasperating. I didn't say the right things -- I just stared at him in shock and horror. Totally ineffective...

rubyslipperlady said...

I agree with the good Friar.

I personally struggle with pride and judgement. Why wouldn't everyone want to do things my way - it's the best, right?

However, my education and experience and belief is that God created us to be diverse and learn from and enjoy one another.

That doesn't always make it easier. \

I'm learning it from a whole new angle now that I'm the minority living in Nairobi.

Abhishek Upadhyay said...

In India there is another kind of racism where in Upper Caste people treat many people of lower caste as an outcast.