Back in April I was the victim of racial hate. Humiliated in a public setting simply because of my assumed nationality. I never shared it here because I want my little cyber home to be a place of comfort and inspiration. But it messed with me. It made me feel weird, still to this day, to go out in because I wonder if some weirdo will do something similar again. Thankfully, (so far) it was an isolated incident due to the political climate in my state of Arizona.
Patrick and I had lengthy discussions about it. He went through it on a bigger level. When he was 16, he was attacked by a trio of grown men INSIDE the mall and beat up because of his skin color. Patrick’s friend at the time, freaked out and stood far back and watched along with the crowd. No one jumped in to help him. Patrick was left with his teeth knocked out, his face busted and bruised while the guys ran away.
I always knew about this story, and used to believe our community had grown from such hatred. But it wasn’t until my incident, which was nothing compared to his, that it all struck a nerve. It’s still here. I didn’t know how to process it.
From time to time, I would post articles on Facebook that related to racial profiling. Since my incident in April, the topic has been on my mind. Oh my gosh! People had such differing, passionate opinions that sometimes came across as disrespectful. The topic veered down some crazy offroads I didn’t like. I deleted the articles because of all things, I didn’t want to foster more hate!
I am not meant to preach politics. I feel my mission in life is to unite people from vast backgrounds through the power of creativity. Art is a universal language. After witnessing how opposite my FB friends backgrounds are, and then to see them come together wholeheartedly for the sake of making things, well – it makes me feel like I’m doing something good. I support my personal causes outside of the blogging world, where I focus on being a good example of my gender, my culture and my community. Promoting positivity, growth, love, and respect.
I was fine with that and thought I hit my stride, until now.
My little sister was the victim of racial profiling tonight by a couple who yelled racial vulgarities at her at the grocery store. They climbed out of a big truck with two huge American flags propped up on each side. My sister is one of the kindest, most non-threatening people I’ve ever known. She minds her own business, but she was able to take a picture of the truck! Her whole focus in life is to take care of my mom. Why did this have to happen to her? They singled her out because of her assumed nationality based on her features. I could handle it when it happened to me, but to her? It’s like it happened to one of my own kids. I am so angry and fearful. It makes me think that I’m in denial or living in a fantasy world. When did hate become so acceptable on a daily basis?
I thought tonight how my dad would handle this. I know he would be mad too. But he would say thank God it was not worse. Thank God she was not hurt. Thank God for the blessings we have. It just means to always be on guard and know some things in life we don’t have control over. We have to make the most of our time here and do the best we can and grow thick skin!
This is my plea. No matter what your beliefs, your background, your gender, heritage, job position, age, etc – make an effort to always, always, always treat people with respect. I know all of you already do! But even the mean people, show them kindness. Choose your words wisely. What ever action you are about to take, how will it make the world a better place? What purpose does it serve? If the answer is nada – then why put it out there?
We all deserve respect. I’m not just talking about people who yell mean things. The little things too. Eye glances, tone of voice, the way we speak on the phone, the way we say hello and goodbye, the way we ask for things, the way we complain, the way we enter a room, the way we go after that last parking spot. Every little bit counts!
Thank you for letting me get this out and for reading, I hope I don’t sound like a whiner! Just chatted with my sister, she is doing fine. We ended the conversation making light of it. Tomorrow is a new day!
Love & light,