|Perhaps I'm naive or blindly optimistic or too much of a dreamer... but it surprises me when faced with blatant racism and other prejudices.
The other day, as we were walking to lunch, we walked passed a construction site on campus. My job is a very international place with lots of medical students from all around the globe. During lunch it isn't uncommon to find table of people speaking a language that isn't English. Anyway... heading the other direction passed the construction site were two gentlemen with wearing the headwraps of some Middle Eastern country. A construction worker leaned out of the cab of his crane and yelled. "Where's your bomb? D'you gotta bomb?! Where's your bomb?"
The two men continued to walk on. I don't know if they didn't hear him... didn't understand him... didn't pay attention to him or what. Either way, it was crazy to think that someone could be so overtly offensive in such a public manner.
We stopped. Watching the scene play out. A co-worker took it upon himself to inform the construction worker that his actions where uncalled for an highly inappropriate. Taking a step further, he called the construction company to speak to the guys boss about his employee's behavior. Even without a name the boss said he knew who my co-worker was talking about.
A couple of things I thought... 1) Did the boss know who he was talking about because of past complaints? 2) Have their been past complaints and yet the guy is still working there? 3) Does being a racist not matter in job world?
I have a feeling the guy won't have much happen other than a "talkin' too" by the boss or some supervisor. It's sad that on such a ethnically diverse campus that anyone would have to put up with people like that. I think it reflects poorly on the institution as a whole. Even tho it was a hired construction worker and not a campus employee.
Labels: introspective, offensive, work