Speak up when someone is copping racist abuse
HERE’S what should have happened on the Sydney bus this morning when ABC journalist Jeremy Fernandez was subject to a torrent of racist and ugly abuse from a fellow passenger.
Someone should have stood up. They should have made a beeline for the gutter mouth and stood between them.
“Hey,” they should have said, “Cut that crap out,” before turning to Fernandez and his two year old daughter and checking if they were alright.
Then, they should have walked off that bus, taking down every conceivable piece of identification: the bus number, the driver’s name - heck maybe even a photograph.
Then, before they did anything else that day, they should have marched straight to the nearest police station or bus company depot and made an official complaint.
And then they should have made it their business to follow it up.
After that, they should have sent Fernandez an email or a tweet offering their support and their account, should he ever need a witness.
Or, to just be someone who is prepared to get angry with him about what happened.
Because being the person who decides not to do any of those things is just as bad as being the person who hurled the foul abuse in the first place.
Follow Lucy on Twitter: @lucyjk
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