A racist incident on a bus involving her young nephew understandably upsets a woman, who posted about it on Twitter, Sunday (Nov 20). A man called her and her nephew “foreign rubbish” a number of times after the boy had taken off his mask to drink some water, she wrote.

The woman and her nephew had been on board SBS Transit 6054G from Kovan on Saturday and the boy took a drink. Just then, the bus driver came to shout at the boy. This made the woman “excessively angry,” but she “forebore.” She then apologised and told her nephew to put his mask on. Unfortunately, another older man said, “Good, tell that foreign rubbish off!”

And when the woman told him that they are Singaporeans, he went on to say, “Foreign, USELESS rubbish.” She then countered by telling him he would not talk this way if they were Chinese, but he told her again, “You are 1000% foreign rubbish.” He continued by saying, “Yeah, yeah, racist, so what?” she told TISG about the incident over the phone.

In her tweet, she also said, “Another old Chinese man came up to ask me to not escalate as I took out my phone. Driver pretended not to hear anything. After the couple alighted, another Chinese family asked me to make a report. That was pure racism they said. Well they kept quiet while it was happening.”

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No one on the bus intervened or stood up for them. “This is new to Singapore,” the woman told TISG. “This is not the Singapore I grew up in,” she added.

The woman appeared to take everything in stride, tweeting that “it is simply on that man for being a racist loser,” and that the reason why she tweeted is to teach her nephew “how to stand up for himself.”

In a series of tweets on Monday morning (Nov 21), she added that she is “thickskinned mah” and “not overly sensitive to racism.”

“Eg, on Sat a chinese cab driver made a racist remark about malay/indian drivers. I remonstrated, he didn’t really reply & I let it go. We had a pleasant conversation about Hougang/WP…

And we parted on friendly terms. The convo about a shared nhood and politics might have made him rethink his prejudices. I dunno, but at least I hope that my response helped. 

That guy on the bus is on another level altogether. He tried to attack a child too.”

She also wrote that her nephew, who was the target of the uncle’s racist words, “should not grow up hating nor fearing Chinese people. He should not let other people’s shortcomings define his worth. Luckily, there are plenty of Chinese people in his life, including by marriage. He will be fine.”

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Fortunately, in response to comments on her tweet, she said that her nephew is somewhat “subdued” but ok.

Others encouraged her to file a report over the incident.

Other Twitter users urged her to let SBS Transit know about the incident, which she told TISG she is considering.

“This is all on the back of the anti-Ceca nonsense,” she added in another tweet.

The woman also said that she does not fully blame the driver, even if his attitude leaves much to be desired. “But the other guy using the opportunity to verbally abuse us – totally out of order.”


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