I get my news on Twitter because it allows me to digest the amount of news I feel I can handle in a day.
This morning was no exception. And I happened on a tweet about an incident that happened on the BART in Cali.
In the tweet was a video clip of a white male rider verbally assaulting–and the later physically assaulting followed by battery another rider. The rider was a young Asian man who as far as I could tell had done nothing to the man.
As the video continues, the white man is growing increasingly angrier without provocation and as this happens passengers move away from him, not wanting to be literally in the middle of this tirade.
That was the first thing that set me off. Because one of the people who moved was a white man seated next to the young Asian man.
I felt like the white man who got up and left the seat abandoned the young Asian. I get it. He probably feared for his safety. But so too did the Asian man probably. Aren’t we all in this together?
The other person who got out of the way was a young Black woman. Now I expected her to move, if anyone. She is a woman whose safety felt threatened and this man was yelling over her to the Asian man, “You Chinese Niger!”
Soon the scene escalated and the white man hit the Asian man in the arm to prove him.
The Asian man did nothing. And the white man came at him again. And the time, the young Asian got up out of his seat to defend himself.
And at that moment the Black girl who had moved stepped in between them to prevent the situation from escalating further.
The white man eventually left the train. And as the video ended, I just wept. For so many reasons.
Here was a Black woman who was trying to protect an Asian man. It’s not often anyone comes to the aid of a Black woman in this and here she is offering up protection herself, even in the midst of making herself incredibly vulnerable here. Problem one.
I was stunned that anyone could harbor that much anger (pain) and hurl it so relentlessly at another human. We’re better than that, aren’t we? Problem two.
And my heart breaks because to be person of color, particularly a woman of color in this world is to feel invisible, unprotected, hated, vilified, hypersexualized and overlooked. It’s fucking EXHAUSTING. And today, my soul, my spirit, my energy has had enough. Those things felt broken after that.
I will pick myself up, like I always do, as I am expected to do, and will soldier on tomorrow