True Life: I Experienced Racism When…

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Though many try to pretend that we live in a colorblind society; for many people of color, racism is a very real issue. Considering we speak to an audience of black women everyday, we thought we’d ask them to share their racist, ridiculous and hurtful experiences with us. Here’s what they had to say.

Artemis: I was 18 in Zurich, learning to speak German. A guy walks up to me with this sneering smile and said, while touching my hair:

“du bist einen schwarzen schlampe.. ja?”

I understood up until the “schlampe” because I had had no reason to know what that meant until then… when I said I didn’t understand it, he just laughed and muttered it again, then got off the tram.

I asked my uncle (who’s white, he married my mom’s sister) what it meant, and watched him get angrier than I’d ever seen him… and told me to punch anyone who ever did it again in the face and get to his office asap.

MN: Did you ever find out what it meant?

Artemis: “You’re a black Slore? yes?” … My uncle told me … Didn’t hurt, but I was pretty pissed off… this guy was nothing like what “tv” in the islands portrayed racists to look like, he looked “normal,” not a monster that will try to rape you. Heck he didn’t even look like he could take me in a fight… meh… I got over it quickly.

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