An American woman’s hateful rant against Filipinos in a grocery story was caught on video and has gone viral showing how anti-immigrant discrimination and racism in the US could also be affecting the millions of overseas Filipino workers there.
While many have come to the Filipino-American community’s defense, the video shows how their long-established presence in American soil has not been a shield from prejudice and discrimination.
Originally posted on Instagram in June 2018 by Jenny Vela, the video shows the elderly American woman talking to Jenny and her husband Alfred, before asking them “you don’t want me talking Philippine?”
She then goes on to accuse Filipinos and other ethnic minorities of “stealing our food, stealing our money, and stealing our jobs.”
Despite Vela’s audible remark calling the harasser a ‘racist’, the older woman appears unperturbed and later tells Alfred to go back to the Philippines.
According to an article published by Asian Journal, Alfred himself is a Mexican-American.
While Vela has since made her Instagram account private, the recording of the incident posted by a friend on Facbook has gone viral.
i saw a video of an old white woman saying racist rants against a filipina in a grocery store on facebook and in the comments section filipinos are telling the filipina who posted it to suck it up bc it's 'the harsh reality of life' dhjdhdj wwha t pic.twitter.com/ZXnMl14TcD
— ⬛️⬆️ | [REST] (@kryptoncult) June 14, 2018
The mayor of Daly City, Jusly Manalo, also a Filipino-American, has spoken out, criticizing the continued existence of “anti-immigrant rhetoric” in the city.
Daly City in San Mateo Country, San Francisco Bay Area is known unofficially as “Filipinotown” for the large number of Filipino-Americans residents. According to recent surveys, a third of its population of more than 100,000 is of Filipino descent.
Aside from having a Filipino-American as its mayor, a majority of the 106-year old city’s council is of Filipino descent. Before Manalo came three previous mayors with Filipino blood.
As the video reveals, even the Filipino population’s standing in the city has not protected them from discrimination.
According to an article by Psychology Today published in January 2018 titled “The Trump Effect“, human rights groups and researchers have observed a steep rise in the incidence of bullying based on ethnicity among school children since Donald Trump was elected President.
Trump is know for his strong stance against illegal immigration and has been supported by individuals and private organizations accused of having racist views, such as the ‘Alt-right’ movement.
The head of state however has disclaimed sharing the same sentiments, going so far as to publicly condemning the movement.
Washington-based public policy research group Bookings Institution in August 2017 published an article seeking to debunk what they believed to be misconceptions about immigration.
The organization argued against the belief that immigrants ‘stole jobs’, saying that immigrants were usually employed to do jobs most Americans did not want to do.
The group also cited research proving continuous immigration in fact contributed to positive economic growth.