Racial disharmony seems to have been the flavor of the times during these past few months. Sunil Laxman wrote about his personal experiences sometime ago. I wanted to post on it first, saying that in my four years here in the US, I haven't personally experienced anything like this (even at the height of the post 9/11 xenophobia), but for some reason the post did not materialize. However I did forget that I had been living in idyllic Athens for most of these four years.
My views started changing when a couple of weeks ago, Meghna and her roomies were yelled at by a passerby because they were "Indian". She also adds that a few days earlier, someone that she was talking about their used car, hung up the phone on her after she replied in the affirmative to the question - "Are you Indian?"! Apparently he mentioned that he wouldn't sell his car to an Indian. But like Sunil, she feels no anger. She says she just pities such people, perhaps on their misguided thoughts, I think.
And then, last week I joined the club too. Twice, I was subjected to a few choice slurs from people driving by as I was waiting to cross the road! I observed that in both incidents last week the parties dishing out the abuse seemed to be teenagers. Were they drunk? I don't think so, since they occured in the middle of the afternoon. Perhaps, the classic case of the devil inside an idle mind, with schools being still closed for the summer? I don't know..
But it would suffice to say that these has been one of those few moments of my life that I'd would rather forget and hope that in the broader sense, the world's much better than these few people.