Staying Free #2: STAND TOGETHER

November 12, 2016 § 2 Comments

whitepowerIn the five days since Trump was elected, incidents of petty harassment and vandalism against minorities have soared. White students have been harassing African Americans. Racist slogans and images have been painted or etched on minority owned buildings.

Yesterday a friend of mine called, very upset. Earlier that day, two of her Asian American friends had been harassed. One was shopping in a ritzy supermarket. A nicely dressed Caucasian lady approached her to shout, “Get out of my country. Go home.” The other friend of a friend was in Chinatown. I don’t have all the details. But she was told–quite imaginatively I think–to go suck a pipe in her opium den. And maybe die.

The harassment itself was shock enough. But worse than the immediate shock was the horror of immediate betrayal. It is a fact that–each occurred in a crowded area–not one person stood up to comfort the victim, speak out against the harassment, or notify the management that something out of the ordinary was going on.

Please, do NOT ever let this happen. Maybe you can’t prevent people from acting crazy once. But you can certainly take steps to see that they don’t act crazy twice. And victims can leave these situations, if shaken and disturbed, also heartened that this is still America, the land of the free.


TAKE A PHOTO. Get names, phone numbers. Write down the facts.

SPEAK OUT. If it is not safe to speak out, find management or authorities.

COMFORT VICTIMS. Make sure they’re okay.

If you’re into visible signals, WEAR A SAFETY PIN. This has been adopted as a “safety” sign for protesters against harassment of minorities.

If Trump were to unify our country as he said in his victory speech, he would have long since held a press conference. He would have said to his followers, “We’ve won. Chill the eff out.” Since he hasn’t done that, we have to. We need to document these incidents. Send documentation to our local and state governments, and friendly people in Congress, if the Federal government majority is absconding from its contracted responsibility for the social wellbeing of our citizens.

The good news is that Trump’s election has only brought out bad feelings that were already here. The bad news is that if we don’t step up, this is hardly going to be the worst of it. The best news is that now we see who’s talking like this, we can take steps to change. It all starts with standing together, against wrong.

Our children are watching.

–c 2016 Jacqueline Austin. All rights reserved.



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§ 2 Responses to Staying Free #2: STAND TOGETHER

  • Chris Danes says:

    Amen Jackie. Well said. All of these situations are shocking and hard to respond to because instantly we all feel vulnerable but it’s very important to comfort the victim and confront the accusers. You say it very well; take pictures and get names. And get mangers and authorities involved. At a minimum, comfort victims.

  • Carla Danes says:

    Thank you. I promise I will speak up loudly in public situations to embarrass a verbal attacker. It might also embarrass the attacked in the process but I have found that if bullies are confronted they back down quickly. It might help to let others in the area who heard the abuse to know it can not be tolerated and speak up too.
    Hard to loudly scold and take pictures too….maybe someone else will do that for me! (I mean, for “us”.)

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