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To feel oddly offended by this remark?

(58 Posts)
sharkirasharkira Mon 12-Mar-18 15:00:27

I am not in the business of being professionally offended, in fact I very rarely get offended by anything as I am a very laid back kind of person.

However.

I was having a conversation with a customer at the pub I work in, about exercise and losing weight, and he remarked;

'didn't you get a lot of exercise as a kid running from the Zulus?'
hmm

For reference, although I look and sound 100% British, I am from (born and lived in) an African country and I'm white. Said customer knows this.

I'm sure he wasn't exactly meaning to be offensive and technically he didn't actually say anything derogatory but aibu to feel offended by this? I ask because I realise I may be being overly sensitive, I was subjected to horrendous physical and emotional bullying as a child because of my nationality.

TheMerryWidow1 Mon 12-Mar-18 15:03:12

jeez I feel offended for you!!

Domino20 Mon 12-Mar-18 15:04:10

He's being racist and trying to get you onside with his attitude. I don't think he's trying to offend you particularly but I always feel disgusted when other white people make racist remarks or jokes and look to me to validate their point off view. So yes, offensive but not to you.

Ummmmgogo Mon 12-Mar-18 15:04:26

yanbu.

DalekDalekDalek Mon 12-Mar-18 15:05:05

What a bizarre comment to make. Definitely sounds racist. YANBU.

Snowysky20009 Mon 12-Mar-18 15:05:21

Yanbu

Sweetpea55 Mon 12-Mar-18 15:05:27

Given what you have said about your past I can why you would feel offended,,Im sure he didnt mean to offend you, especially as you know him.Do you feel hurt by what he said?

PuppyMonkey Mon 12-Mar-18 15:06:05

Isn’t it more plain and simple racism against black people living in your home country? confused

halfwitpicker Mon 12-Mar-18 15:07:33

Bit random really.

halfwitpicker Mon 12-Mar-18 15:07:55

What did you reply?

Titaniumpins Mon 12-Mar-18 15:08:53

Thats Prince Phillip worthy indeed. Is he a pensioner ? Not saying that excuses what he said it was very insensitive but different generations often say inapproprate things in that regard. eek

sharkirasharkira Mon 12-Mar-18 15:12:32

I did feel hurt/offended by what he said. Although like I said, he didn't technically say anything abusive or discriminatory but I think its just because I have so many memories of people saying similar things to me my entire life and I'm fed up of it tbh.

'Were you raised by elephants'
'Did you live in a mud hut'
'Does everyone walk around with their boobs out over there'
'Do they have cars where you come from'

And so on and so on. I know a lot of it is ignorance but people can't really be THAT stupid can they? Don't get me started on the xenophobes who expect you to agree with them that immigrants are ruining the country and stealing all the jobs hmm. Then they always start freaking out when I explain that I am one.

sharkirasharkira Mon 12-Mar-18 15:14:02

I just sort of changed the subject and glossed over it as he is a regular at the pub and it was very quiet at the time so I didn't want to cause a scene. Not a pensioner, maybe mid-late forties.

OutyMcOutface Mon 12-Mar-18 15:16:39

It must have been meant as a joke. I doubt that she was poking fun at your nationality or whatever.

Petalflowers Mon 12-Mar-18 15:18:43

Perhaps he was just an ignorant git who thought that people who grew up in African countries were routinely chased by Zulus.

Buster72 Mon 12-Mar-18 15:19:04

I share your pain and your experiences. I just put it down to the mind boggling level of ignorance I have encountered living in a country with free education and libraries that some folks couldn't be arsed to read a book or learn a little more about the world.

ivenoideawhatimdoing Mon 12-Mar-18 15:19:17

I’d have said ‘I’m sorry; I don’t understand what you mean?’ And would have made him explain in in great detail all the while making odd eye contact and if he tried to drift of topic would have brought it back to him and then just laughed at him.

You handled it far better than I would

MiaHayek Mon 12-Mar-18 15:19:36

What do you mean by you 'look and sound 100% British'? Isn't that racist? You could be black or brown and still be 100% British FYI.

DianaPrincessOfThemyscira Mon 12-Mar-18 15:23:23

Jesus. That is fucking awful.

sleep5 Mon 12-Mar-18 15:25:21

There are a lot of ignorant people out there who've only been overseas to Brit resorts with Brit friends and just don't have a clue about the rest of the world.

I have a Malaysian friend in the UK who often gets asked if she lived in the jungle there and if they have toilets and cars. Sometimes it's difficult to tell if they're just ignorant/stupid or are trying to get a bite or be offensive.

sharkirasharkira Mon 12-Mar-18 15:26:47

Yes I realise that Mia, what I mean is that I am white and blonde and have a classically British sounding accent so the vast majority of people who talk to or interact with me will assume that I am British with British heritage.

Jaxhog Mon 12-Mar-18 15:27:50

What a bizarre comment to make. Definitely sounds racist. YANBU.
This

Jaxhog Mon 12-Mar-18 15:30:44

Mind you, my mum emigrated here from Canada so I have dual nationality. When I mention this, people sometimes say they can hear my Canadian accent, or on one memorable occasion, speak to me in French! I've never lived in Canada.

People can be very strange sometimes.

BertrandRussell Mon 12-Mar-18 15:33:39

Blimey. What a racist arsehole!

UserThenLotsOfNumbers Mon 12-Mar-18 15:34:30

Yanbu
He is a racist, but no doubt if challenged he would say it was "banter".

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