It’s fucked up how much and how often I talk and think about everyday racism, but when I actually encounter it have no nicely thought-out action ready. Whether it’s directed at me or at others, I act like a deer in the headlights: freeze. Silently will the other person(s) to become distracted by something else. Wonder if I should physically remove myself from the situation. Try and fail to think of words. Definitely fail (not even try) to say something.
So yeah, concrete situation: today I wanted to sit on a bench by the river but all the benches were occupied. One only had one person sitting there, so I politely asked if the space was still free. He said yes, and moved over to make space. He told me not to ask next time and just sit down. I said oh, I didn’t know, maybe he was saving the seat for someone else, I didn’t want to be impolite. He kind of shrugged off the idea of having to be polite, but then kind of conceded that asking was okay, too. And then the punch to the gut – he added, yeah, maybe asking was good, some people don’t ask, mainly Arabs.Read More »
South of the border is a crass, brash, crude, cruel, snarling, heartless, stupid, mean, linguistically challenged bigot, racist and misogynist. His counterpart north of the border is all smiles and warmth, projects compassion and love, is eloquent and the face of fun and good cheer, can pass the strictest of political correctness tests, calls himself a feminist and reminds us at every chance how much he welcomes refugees, Muslims, immigrants and diversity. And why wouldn’t he be smiling? Trump is the antichrist that lets him play knight in shining armour in Canada and the world.Read More »
♪ Hätt ich gewußt, dass es kein Kuchen da wär
wär ich nicht gekommen, dann wär mein Magen nicht leer
das konnte ich nicht wissen, ich dachte, bestimmt
gibt’s bei dir immer Kuchen, vielleicht mit Schoko und ZimtRead More »
one thing minorities have quickly learned is that nothing is given; all victories are earned. we’re always reminded that just to get half as much you must work twice as hard – and have a bit of luck.
i’ve been told that implicitly from a young age, and heard it more recently on the airwaves from larry wilmore, host of the nightly show; from jessica huang, on fresh off the boat; from viola davis, when accepting her prize; and from scandal’s rowan, with words both painful and wise.Read More »
Affordable housing is among the biggest of Vancouver’s headaches, as is the case in many cities. It’s a hot policy topic. And if I were to use two words to summarise what the discussion boils down to, they would be: Chinese buyers.Read More »
“I’ve been wondering,” the man says as he turns on the deep fryer, “which country you come from.” He guesses South Korea. “Because you’re tall.” Phenotypes are a poor indicator of origin, I say, and correct his answer. “How many generations?” Does it matter? “Of course.” He’s quite emphatic on that point.