I am a thirty-one year old immigrant. I have been abused countless times on public transport. Never once has the abuse been racial as I am a white man living in a predominantly white country. It’s been xenophobic(kinda) as I have been abused for being Russian and German. Once it was anti-semitic despite the fact that I am an atheist. Its been for speaking English, not speaking polish to my English-speaking partner, for reading a book(in English) and countless times for not giving people money or cigarettes. What it never has been is intelligent.
As most of you can guess I am indirectly linking my own experiences to the infamous racist British lady most will have already seen on you tube. Without a doubt the video is horrific viewing. Not because I am white, or because I am British but because I am human.
Despite the social advancements of the last 100 years racism is still evident in even the most progressive societies. The fact that we are no closer to being rid of it suggests that it’s either here to stay or that we are clueless on how to deal with it.
The wave of public nausea felt upon the release of the publication of this video is a heartening example of civic action. Social media is a new tool which people are still learning how to utilise. However people must be wary how quickly martyrs can be made.
It would foolish to imagine that there are not more people like her. The fact which troubles me far more than this one woman’s crass stupidity is that from the 6.8 million viewers 66k have been compelled to dislike it and 19k have liked it. That is a ratio of just under one-third.
It is not an army of one. Nor is it only a problem of the working classes. We live in an age where our national football team is led by a man completely devoid of moral fibre. It is a problem which everyone condemns but few confront. I sincerely hope that this video may serve to spark the flame of idea which can often result in change.
Tackling a problem often requires first identifying it and then dismantling the root cause. In my opinion it is not caused by poverty or social background but rather by ignorance. My suggestion would be to not attack them but to shame them.
Some racists believe that racism is a worthwhile belief. Using it as a label to attack them with is the linguistic equivalent of beating someone with a feather duster. It’s much better to berate them for their lack of intellect.
Let’s make them famous for their stupidity, let’s ensure that everywhere they go people know just how oblivious to their retardation they are. Let’s enlist social media, let’s start websites like isyourneighbourracist.com with videos and names. Let’s make sure that these people know that at every waking moment we are watching. Let’s do something and let’s not stop until the last one has woken up to the fact that it is stupidity which is the biggest danger to our world and not other human beings.