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I heard something awful last night. A well respected white man being obnoxious to a woman of colour. A Canadian woman whose family originated from Taiwan who has dared to open a conversation about race with us.

It seemed like he didn’t want an Asian upstart coming into his country and challenging his white privilege. He sounded determined to humiliate her on a national broadcaster. It was ugly, but she held her own and challenged some of his statements. Asking some pointed questions of her own.

The interview that did go to air was edited for “brevity”, but Beverley Wang broadcast it in its entirety on her program, It’s Not A Race. It created an uproar. The reaction on social media was swift, with many expressing their shock and outrage. The broadcaster pulled the interview and apologised.

But it stung. It hurt to listen to it. They say it went on for a full twenty minutes. I lasted about ten.

It’s always a bit of a shock when it happens. Perhaps because it happens so rarely. But it is always ugly when it does. It reveals the petty fears of the perpetrator. Their desire to be top dog and the cruelty in their self-centeredness. It also reveals our own desire to be wanted and accepted. That sting of rejection and pride can often bloom into ugliness of our own.

So I have a choice today. As an Australian woman of Korean descent, I can choose to tar an entire race of people with the same brush. Give in to the anger and pain. Or I can recognise that he is only one voice in a country full of diverse cultures and ideas, and concentrate on the many who have shown others kindness. Who still believe in a fair go and a warm welcome.

My husband said this morning, “Instead of being outraged by the past and old ideas, why don’t you look at our son? He doesn’t care if his friends are brown or pink. He just likes them and enjoys life. He’s the future of this place.”

So I think I will, and hope for a better future.

via the Daily Prompt: Create

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June 2017
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