Sickened by abuse

The comedian Paul Chowdhry once commented on an episode of The Comedy Store that Devon was “full of racists”.

I was a bit upset. I don’t consider myself racist, and I don’t think many people I know would consider themselves racist.

To be a Devonian and to live in a county “full of racists” I thought was a tad harsh.

Until this past Sunday, when I observed some sickeningly casual racist abuse with my own disbelieving eyes.

Walking back home from town [Barnstaple] I encountered a family out for a walk coming the other way.


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The mother pushing the pram, father up ahead minding his own business; idling their way through a Sunday afternoon like any other.

Out of nowhere two bike-riding cowards sped past, shouting: “Oi, oi, ****ing n*****s.” They then raced off home laughing.

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The family didn’t even flinch. I did. We then proceeded to walk past each other, eyes averted as if to try and pretend nothing had happened.

To them maybe nothing had happened. Maybe they were so used to this abuse that they just chalked it up to an everyday occurrence?

Well, I noticed, and it was quite simply embarrassing.

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