http://pleasantonweekly.com/square/print/2012/05/13/rude-experience-spoiled-mothers-day


Town Square

Rude Experience Spoiled Mother's Day

Original post made by Ram Dawani, Sycamore Place, on May 13, 2012

I've been in US for 15 years and lived in Pleasanton for 6 years and think it's one of the best places to live.

Today I had a very rude experience - I was shopping with my mother in law at one of the retail stores. An old lady was being a bit rude to my mother-in-law and soon she told us to "go back to your country". When I told her this is my country too - she asked me to prove it and threatened to call the police. I told her to be my guest and that we will wait right there for them.

Anyways, she left never to come back.

I believe Pleasanton is a great city and I've never had this experience in my life before. I will chalk this down to a random incident by a random person - there are odd balls all over the world- and not a reflection on our wonderful city. However, it did spoil the wonderful mother's day I was hoping to provide my M-I-L.


An upstanding, legal, Ivy League school graduate, US Resident

Comments

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Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 13, 2012 at 7:58 pm

So sorry to hear that. I feel your pain as I too have been a victim of discrimination all my life even though I was born in this country. I am Asian American but still get treated like a foreigner because of the color of my skin. I wish I could be more optomistic and tell you it was an isolated incident, but it is what a lot of caucasians feel. This lady just happened to be more vocal about it.


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Posted by Ripper
a resident of Castlewood
on May 13, 2012 at 8:54 pm

Well, if it makes you feel better I allowed a Chinese family to cut in front of me at Costco today because they had no clue as to proper etiquette in standing in line one at a time. I just stood back and smiled...


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Posted by john
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on May 13, 2012 at 10:04 pm

Ripper,

How do you know they were a Chinese family? Were they speaking Chinese? Do you how to speak Chinese?


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Posted by Sam
a resident of Oak Hill
on May 14, 2012 at 7:28 am

Sorry to hear about your incident at the mall. I'm curious: You didn't mention what prompted the "old lady" at the mall to speak to your mother-in-law in the first place. Anyway, mental illness is more common than many people believe, so please don't let it ruin your day. She's the one with a serious problem, not you.


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Posted by Sam
a resident of Oak Hill
on May 14, 2012 at 7:31 am

John said :"How do you know they were a Chinese family?"

Please don't encourage him to post again.


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Posted by Chris
a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on May 14, 2012 at 10:14 am

Pleasanton at it's finest! I'm surprised this is the first time that has happened. Pleasanton is the most conservative, uptight and pro american city I've ever lived in. Yes, I am looking to sell my home and leave this place. The people of San Jose are more accepting and polite to all!


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Posted by Claire
a resident of Bordeaux Estates
on May 14, 2012 at 5:42 pm

Please keep in mind that this woman may be suffering from Dementia. My now deceased Aunt was like this and it wasn't until years later that we realized she had been in a state of decline for quite some time. I am so sorry you went through this.


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Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 14, 2012 at 7:36 pm

How about accepting that she was just racist? Is that so far fetched? Do all racist people have dementia or what?


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Posted by Mittens
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 14, 2012 at 7:58 pm

Its easy to judge based on a one sided story about those awful racist white people all over Pleasanton. No mention of what led up to this alleged confrontation, so the writer must be a victim of those terrible pro American people in Pleasanton.
Maybe the solution is to do what Chris suggested and move to wonderful, tolerant San Jose where there is no questioning who squats next to your home. I'm sure it's great, once you get used to those violent, Mexican gangs. Oh, tolerance.....


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Posted by Pleasantonian
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on May 14, 2012 at 9:12 pm

What a difficult situation for you and your m-i-law, Ram. Sorry to hear about your experience, and I will echo what Claire stated about dementia and Alzheimer's disease. Hope the rest of your day went much better.


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Posted by John
a resident of Ruby Hill
on May 14, 2012 at 9:45 pm

I'm amazed how rude some people can be to others they think they will never have to see again.


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Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 14, 2012 at 10:35 pm

Mittens, you are racist and dont even know it. I am not sure what country (or planet) you live in, but America IS a land of immigrants, starting from the first English settlers and on. Anti- immigrant is about as anti-American as you can get.


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Posted by Native Americans?
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 15, 2012 at 10:52 am

The Native Americans, mistakenly called "Indians" by Europeans who did not know any better, were here for thousands of years.
But they are now a good example of what can happen to your culture if you do not have good controls on immigration.


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Posted by LIvermore Neighbor
a resident of Livermore
on May 15, 2012 at 12:55 pm

I will agree with others about having a family member who has dementia. My own mother raised all of us kids to accept others for who they are rather than the color of there skin or their cultural heritage. However, as her dementia progresses I am constantly "on edge" about what is going to come out of her mouth. I find myself apologizing to others for things that she says to complete strangers that are very rude and hurtful. I love my Mom, but I don't have any more days with her where we can spend the time shopping together as this disease robs her mind.
Obviously I don't know if this "old woman" had dementia or not, but I am sorry that this experience was hurtful but hope it didn't really ruin your day. I am sure your M-I-L enjoyed the time you spent together and that is what counts.


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Posted by Jake
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 15, 2012 at 1:36 pm

Kind of hard to have an opinion on the matter when the facts presented were very vague.

How did this start? How did this evolve? What were the circumstances?


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Posted by Jan Brewer
a resident of another community
on May 15, 2012 at 3:39 pm

I don't get it. Every red-blooded American should have the right to question anyone they think might be in this country illegally. For those questioned, well, that's the price of freedom. It's especially important that police can question anyone who looks suspicious -- you know, like having brown skin or wearing a turban. Studies show that the more police and other people can inquire about others' legality the more likely illegals and suspected illegals will be to call police or cooperate with them. This is just good American common sense. It's worked really well in Arizona. Next time Obama visits, I expect I'll ask him to verify his citizenship.


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Posted by Steve
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on May 15, 2012 at 4:54 pm

To Asian Anonymous,

You have been discriminated all your life for being Asian in the Bay Area? Please...all us white people go around assuming you are fresh off the boat just because you are Asian? If someone doesn't like you or if you are shunned by others it is probably because you are a jerk...there are jerks in every race. As a white person who grew up in Hawaii as a minority, I faced racial remarks all the time (some of them from Asians) but I don't think all Asians are racist. Get over yourself and look inward....you might not like what you see if you are honest. Everyone is so sensitive.....an old lady makes a comment and people let that affect them all day? I assure you that most people in Pleasanton are not racist. Either she had dementia or she is a jerk (or both).


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Posted by CALL IT LIKE IT IS
a resident of Castlewood
on May 15, 2012 at 5:19 pm

I DONT KNOW WHAT FLAVOR ANYONE WAS IN THIS SITUATION, BUT THE PROBLEM IS NOT IMMIGRATION OR RACE ITS WHAT ITS ALWAYS BEEN, LACK OF
RESPECT FOR THE COUNTRY ONE IS IN. YOU DONT COME HERE CHANGE CUSTOMS OR IMPOSE YOUR VAUES OR LACK THERE OF, ON OUR PEOPLE. LET ME GIVE YOU AN EASY ONE. I DONT HAVE TO MENTION RACE FOR EVERYBODY TO KNOW WHAT GROUP OF PEOPLE I AM SPEAKING ABOUT, WHEN I SAY THESE FOLKS FLAT OUT SUCK AT DRIVING ON OUR ROADS. AND THEN THERES A FEW GROUPS WHO FOLLOW A CLOSE SECOND AND THIRD PLACE IN TERMS OF CURTIOUS AND SAFE DRIVING HABBITS. WHY YOU ASK ? BECAUSE THEY HAVE BROUGHT THEIR HOMELAND DRIVING SKILLS WITH THEM, AND REFUSE TO RESPECT OUR WAYS. THIS IS NOT RACIST, THIS IS FACT. THIS IS JUST THE TIP OF THE ICEBERG IN REGAURDS TO RESPECTING AMERICANS AND OUR WAY OF LIFE. THE OTHER DAY I HAD A CERTAIN GROUP OF PEOPLE PUSH THEIR WAY THROUTH THE GROUP I WAS WITH. NO EXCUSE ME, NO POLITE SHUFFLING AROUND TO BE ACCOMODATING, FLAT OUT PUSH US OUT OF THE WAY. WHEN YOU THINK OF THIS, THINK OF THIRD WORLD VALUES ANYWHERE.again i wasnt there and didnt see any of it, i only know what i do see. so ask yourself "did i respect / and act in the way a prudent, law abidding citizen of the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA WOULD have behalved or did i act in the way i would have acted in the country i have fled" ? REMEMBER THERE IS A REASON YOU ARE HERE AND NOT THE COUNRTY YOU FLED . THANKS , AND GOD BLESS AMERICA !!!!!!!!!!!!! WHY 13 EXCLAMATION PIONTS ? WHY IS 13 IMPORTANT TO AMERICAN HISTORY ? IF YOU DONT KNOW, THAT MIGHT BE WHERE THE PROBLEM IS. KNOW OUR COUNRTY IS TO LOVE OUR COUNTRY. BY THE WAY YOU CAN FIND 13 IN EVERYTHING TRULY AMERICAN. DONT BELIEVE ME, START WITH THE DOLLAR BILL IN YOUR POCKET AND HOW IT GOT THERE.


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Posted by Jan Brewer
a resident of another community
on May 15, 2012 at 5:40 pm

I agree WHOLEHEARTEDLY with CALL IT LIKE IT IS. Americans are the most polite and least pushy people in the WHOLE WIDE world (with the exception of a certain president who's in over his head, way over his head, who's very pushy and inconsiderate).

Americans are most beloved all over the world because we -- and by we I mean those of use who were born here -- are so humbly civil, patient and polite at air ports and train depose. I intend to give a lengthy speech on this, drawing upon my extended public speaking skills.


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Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 15, 2012 at 8:41 pm

Steve, I never said all caucasians are racist, but you cant deny that there are caucasian racists, as there are asian racists (but not all asians are racist). And as far as my experience goes, yes I can say that some people have slighted me because I was a "jerk" and some people have been rude to me because they were racist.

So again, why is it that the old lady must have been provoked or crazy to say such a thing? Why not admit that there exists the possibility she was just racist?


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Posted by Sam
a resident of Oak Hill
on May 15, 2012 at 11:26 pm

Anonymous said : "Steve, I never said all caucasians are racist, but you cant deny that there are caucasian racists, as there are asian racists (but not all asians are racist)."

Anonymous, what's your point? As far as I can tell, all you're saying is this:

Some Caucasians are racist.
Some Caucasians are not racist.
Some Asians are racist.
Some Asians are not racist.
Some people slighted you because you were a "jerk".
Some people slighted you not because you were a "jerk".
Some people slighted you because they were racist.
Some people slighted you but not because they were racist.

The old lady may have been a racist.
The old lady may not have been a racist.
The old lady may have been a jerk.
The old lady may have been Caucasian racist.
The old lady may have been an Asian racist.
Etc., etc, etc, ..............

Thanks for clearing things up for us.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Ram Dawani
a resident of Sycamore Place
on May 16, 2012 at 9:00 pm

There are always more than one possible explanation and most of us always jump to the one. I am happy to receive other perspectives that I gained through this post - including medical conditions that may cause such a behavior.

After a few days of this episode, I almost laugh at this incident. As long as I'm secure in my identity and my belonging to this community, I shouldn't let it affect me.

I'm happy that our community has places like PleasantonWeekly, where we are able to raise our voices and share our ideas freely. Afterall, thats is one of the things that makes this country great!


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Posted by annoyed
a resident of Val Vista
on Jan 12, 2014 at 11:46 am

The elderly woman might have been so rude because of being frustrated with how rude she was treated by newly immigrated Asian. Asians who have lived here for awhile I find just as nice as the next person, but I have noticed a huge amount of newer Asian immigrants walking around with an attitude that we are inferior or that we are beneath them. It is very upsetting when we open up our country for them to come here to make a better life for themselves. If we are so inferior, our schools are so inferior then go back to your home and be happy there with your "superior" countrymen.


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Posted by MP
a resident of Danbury Park
on Jan 12, 2014 at 2:26 pm

Honestly, the author doesn't like labels yet she has no problem judging the other person an labeling her as an "old" lady. Not labeling or judging needs to go both ways. Doing this makes the author look no better than the other party involved. I like diversity including our wise population that have lived a few years more than me.