Coffee and Bile

As you know, I am a stay at home mum and my daily social life revolves around the people I meet through the kids. I live in a white middle class area, most of the mum’s are fine but I have come across some hideously racist women and I wonder how other people deal with coffee morning racism. I’m talking about when you’re having a cuppa and cake with another mummy, talking about school, weather, soap powder etc. Someone maybe you’ve only met a couple of times in the playground, and then they hit you with a racist comment in between mouthfuls of carrot cake. I’ve heard things from “I think there are too many Jews round here” to “you can imagine how worried I was when I opened the front door and there was a big black man standing there”. My response to date has been to state firmly and clearly that I find those comments offensive and racist and do not agree with their views. I am left feeling really low that this filth tinkled out in such agreeable surroundings is obviously seen by many as perfectly acceptable and think I should do or say more, but don’t know what.

2 comments

  • This has happened to me too. The main reason it makes me squirm is because this kind of attitue is the antithesis of the kind of crowd I mingled with before becoming a smug married with kids. I’m not sure I’d be as brave as you – I’m more likely to let it ride for a few minutes and then refer to it demonstrating with my own story that I don’t agree. It feels like glossing though.

    More than anything – your story resonates with me. Your obviously a natural with the written word. Why don’t you develop this into a short story and get it published (local paper, magazine etc.) I think it may be the best way to raise the debate.

  • Well it is perfectly acceptable. Unfortunately.

    My faith in humanity has been shaken by the number of rules we need to create to protect ourselves from ourselves.

    If you saw Louis Theroux last night, he ran into a problem when visiting American rascists. When asked whether whhat kind of women he dated, he admitted “Jewish women”.

    Issues of race or community are really touchy. It was ironic that Louis was showing up these neo-Nazis as closed-minded imbeciles when by his own admission he couldn’t move beyond his own racial/religious confines to find his partners.

    I empathise with your frustration. Rascism, like religion, is a blanket to cosset people from the outside world, from thinking about things that might make them uncomfortable.

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