PUBLIC HARASSMENT: I WAS WALKING HOME…

I was walking home from work, passing by Trump Towers late summer 2020. A lady walking out of the foyer in the building yelled at me from across the road, “GO HOME DIRTY COMMIE!!!” A number of people turned to look at her, a few kids at the corner giggled. This was before Anti-AAPI issues were at the fore, and honestly, as a New Yorker, we’re so used to random comments that my instinct of completely ignoring her kicked in and I kept walking (sometimes it really is safer not to get in an argument or potential fight in the middle of the road). Later that night, I kept thinking about what she said, and how awful it made me feel, and regretted not having confronted her, or even tried to clarify how blatantly wrong she was, or what I could have even done, or if anything could have been done to change such a person’s mind. It’s one of those moments that you remember years past its occurrence. I wonder now if thanks to greater awareness, people would have stepped in. At the very least, I feel better equipped to handle these situations, and it gives me strength and comfort to see that people actually acknowledge the difficulties we experience on a daily basis.

[got_back]