Yesterday, Facebook user Mubarik Gyenne-Bayere posted a video of a white working class woman physically and verbally abusing a black taxi driver in Hamilton, Ontario.
In the short clip, which is not safe for work, the woman can be heard screaming racial slurs at the driver, seen hitting him with her fist, and using her purse as a weapon. She repeatedly called him the n-word, as well as told him to “Go back to Africa.” According to passersby, the woman accused the driver of attempting to steal her purse as well.
Hamilton police are considering the woman’s aggression to be a hate crime.
Accordingly, the 33-year-old perpetrator is being charged for assault, CBC Hamilton reported. In an official statement from the city’s police department, they declared that “The Hamilton Police Hate Crime Unit has been assigned to the matter as a result of the hate bias overtones used by the accused.”
These criminal charges run much deeper than simply policing hate bias, however.
On Facebook, Gyenne-Bayere accompanied his upsetting cell phone video along with a post which considered the socioeconomic causes for such a racist altercation to occur in the first place.
He wrote in part, “…Wherein an everyday conflict between two working class people that probably have more in common with one another than not, is automatically transformed into "I'm white and upset, and you're black and lesser than me, so you have no right to upset me". This behavior and reaction by the woman comes from a system that discriminates against certain people in order to exploit the lot of them while only a few are benefiting in the long term...”
As Gyenne-Bayere told CBC in an interview, even in Canada, the rise of Donald Trump has come hand-in-hand with supporters “hurling racial slurs and widening divides between cultures.”
Along these lines, the rise of Trump speaks volumes to the way those with white superiority complexes have felt more empowered lately to use skin color to their self-entitled advantage.
Racism is certainly not new. But politicians like Trump and his surrogates who push their xenophobic agendas using prejudiced rhetoric only add fuel to the pre-existing fire.
Banner photo credit: Facebook, Mubarik Gyenne-Bayere