Bigot Bait

| Montreal, Canada | Working | August 13, 2012

(My ethnic heritage is a bit of a mish-mash. On one side, I am of recent European immigrants, while on the other I am native and English. This occurs on the first day of my first job as I am sitting with coworkers and my supervisor in the lunch room. My coworker is getting increasingly vocal about his disdain for native Americans due to recent news items including a blockade of key roads in the Montreal area. The conversation takes place in French.)

Coworker: “Natives are s***! They don’t pay taxes. They’re into smuggling and criminal gangs, and they all drink themselves into prison. I hate them!”

Me: “Um, I’m part Mohawk.”

Coworker: *embarrassed* “Uh, I have to go and compile that program…”

(My coworker leaves. My supervisor, who has overheard everything, approaches me.)

Supervisor: “Well, that ended wrong, didn’t it? I guess every generation has its problem with one group or another. In my day, it was the f***ing DPs. You know what a DP is? Displaced Person. God, they flooded the city after the war. Useless, and I bet most of them were Nazi sympathizers. They were filthy and they brought disease. They took jobs away from good Quebecers!”

Me: “Um, my mom was a DP. I’m part German.”

Supervisor: *laughs* “I put my foot in it that time didn’t I? Well, at least you’re not English.”

Me: “Um…”

(I quit very shortly thereafter.)

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