Just a quick, possibly quite self indulgent post about something I can’t get out of my head.
Yesterday I was walking home from work, at about three in the afternoon. I had my headphones on, and am generally fairly oblivious to my surroundings after work. But I heard shouts. I looked across the road, and there in the bus stop was a young Pakistani man. Sitting on the bench beside the bus stop were two middle aged (white) men, and standing up was a middle aged (white) woman wearing a cross. So far, so unremarkable. What had caused my attention was the two young men standing over the Pakistani lad, shouting racial abuse at him. I’m not going to type it out, but you can imagine. Racists are rarely smart enough to vary the tune of ignorance. Without thinking, I crossed the road, pushed the thugs aside. I sat down to the lad, and started chatting away. Basic, inconsequential stuff. This was all it took to get the thugs to step away (although they continued shouting). I couldn’t believe that NO ONE had thought to do that. I waited with him until the bus came, and then told the driver not to let the thugs on the bus. The boy asked me if I would be okay waiting for the bus by myself, I explained I lived across the road and would be fine. He started CRYING. Fucking crying. He had been living in the UK and NZ for 10+ years, and something as simple as this made him cry. When I asked him why he was crying, he explained that no one ever speaks up. Then the bus had to leave, and he thanked me.
And I felt like shit. I still feel like shit. Something like this should never happen in the first place, and my response should not be a rarity. It’s preying on me, and I just don’t understand how it happened. Please, if you see something like this, never let it go.
M; I am sorry that life has done this too you. You do not deserve it.