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View Poll Results: Have you witnessed racial abuse when using public transport?
Yes 9 42.86%
No 12 57.14%
Voters: 21. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 02-20-2013, 12:30 AM
 
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Have you witnessed racial abuse when using public transport? If you have, how many people were racially abusing the person or people? Was it you that was being racially abused?
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Old 02-20-2013, 08:45 AM
 
Location: Pasadena, CA
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I was one the bus one time with my wife and some crazy old white homeless guy was calling all of the black people on the bus "black devil" and making faces / horns with his hands at them. The white guy was seriously nutso and luckily the few black riders on the bus were definitely not crazy, though one guy finally lost his temper and started to yell back. The bus driver (also black) stopped the bus and kicked the crazy guy off.

As far as Metro on customer racial abuse, no.
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Old 02-20-2013, 11:32 AM
 
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Yes, one crazy person on the bus. It was a loud crazy rant not directed at any one person in particular. Can't recall the exact details now, but think it was a black guy yelling about white people giving jobs to Mexican immigrants, with most of the ire going towards the white man. We heard a similar rant (who knows, maybe same guy!) at a restaurant in Hollywood once before the staff made him leave. Most of the riders on that route were usually Hispanic, with a few white people. On the bus it wasn't scary, but in the restaurant the guy came in with a duffle bag and seemed more with a purpose; I was scared he'd pull out a gun or something, and at the time I realized we were the only white people in the room.
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Old 02-20-2013, 01:46 PM
 
Location: Southern California
15,087 posts, read 17,580,911 times
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The only abuses I have ever encounted on the bus (when I used them back in the day) are bad body odors, people crowding my personal space, uncomfortable seating, excessive noises coming from the engine/road/structure of the bus, and the general feeling that I hate taking the bus.

[you can't spell abuse without the word BUS]
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Old 02-20-2013, 03:54 PM
 
Location: Nescopeck, Penna. (birthplace)
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I use public transit only when on vacation or when going into the "Northeast Corridor" on the weekends when time is not a constraint. Still, I cannot recall a single incident where race was an aggravating factor. the vast, -- no, overwhelming majority of people from all parts of the spectrum behave with dignity and respect.

Among the far-removed systems I've used from time to time, Los Angeles had the highest proportion of "undesirable" patrons (street people, unwashed, etc,) and Montreal the fewest.
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Old 02-20-2013, 06:17 PM
 
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In defense of the LA public transportation system, while the incident I described above did place in LA, I also found that -- at least on the routes I frequented -- the riders were, overall, more polite than the riders in any other system anywhere we've lived. More polite than DC, FAR more polite than San Francisco (which had more crazy people, more pushy people, and was always packed), and more polite than Minneapolis (where we live now, and where people are generally polite enough, but aren't so good about giving up seats for old/disabled people). I had a really positive experience with riding public transportation in LA, and saw a lot of examples of people being friendly and kind to strangers. And to make a race-based stereotype of my own, a lot of the riders in LA are Hispanic, and it has been my experience that Latino men are far more likely to offer up their seats to pregnant ladies, to old people, or even just to women (not necessary, but hey, it's nice!) than most other people.
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Old 02-20-2013, 06:56 PM
 
Location: New York City
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I live in New York. You have people babbling crazy and obnoxious things on the subway, some of it with racial overtones, but most of them are schizophrenic or have some similar issue.

I don’t think they really know what their saying.
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Old 02-20-2013, 08:50 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles, CA
2,923 posts, read 3,642,362 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tpk-nyc View Post
I live in New York. You have people babbling crazy and obnoxious things on the subway, some of it with racial overtones, but most of them are schizophrenic or have some similar issue.

I donít think they really know what their saying.
Yeah and that's what people are describing. I don't really even consider that "racial abuse". I mean it is, but if a person is mentally ill then it's a little different. They could just as easily be ranting about some other random thing that makes no sense.

Outside of crazy people I don't think that I've seen anything that I'd call racial abuse. It must happen, but I've never seen it. I've seen some antagonistic behavior that was likely racial, but there was no racist or racial language involved.
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Old 02-21-2013, 04:22 PM
 
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When you're on the bus everyday you're bound to witness or be subject to harassment, racial or otherwise. I recall several incidents on BART and on Muni buses, and on buses and light rail in the South Bay. But counting years of experience they're in the end relatively rare. The incidents I recall were for the most part black or white anti-Asian.
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Old 09-03-2013, 04:49 PM
 
Location: Costa Mesa, Orange County, California since Nov. 2009.
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During my adult life after high school, I lived in New York 1982-92 and lived in San Francisco 1992-95. I used public transportation in both cities and witnessed my fill of crazies that liked to start trouble with strangers. Here is my most memorable incident.

In June 1992, just a couple of weeks before I moved out of New York and relocated to San Francisco, I boarded the #1 uptown train at Times Square and ran into a classmate from Hunter College-CUNY (where I just graduated from). As I was talking to her, I noticed a guy sitting next to her staring at me with the type of smile only a disturbed person could have. At one point he says to me "why didn't you say 'hi' to me?" At first I was taken aback by his weird comment, then asked him "are you with her?" He told me no, then I told him "because I don't know you sir." Then for the next fifteen minutes, he gets up and goes into a loud verbal tirade against me in front of my friend and other passengers in the crowded car. Even as I continued to ignore him, he kept talking and talking and very loudly so I and everybody else in the car had to hear him continue to insult my intelligence in front of everybody. He then made it racial saying I ignored him because he was black. No one in the car came to my defense.

Finally, he said "hi" to a guy standing next to him. The other guy, now wised up as to what set him off, says "hi" to him back and even shook his hand. Then he tells me "See? This is how you do it." Then he gets off the train. Both my friend and I were stunned.

Had I not met my classmate and had I carried pepper spray with me at the time, I would have blasted him in the eyes with it at the next stop and ran out. People should be allowed to use public transportation without being harassed by strangers. New Yorkers in general have this attitude that getting harassed is something you have to put up with if you live in New York. Even the police don't do anything. In Australia, Canada and the U.K., you could be arrested and prosecuted for that. In New York, it's de-facto "legal" to harass strangers.
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