Racism in Hawai

It had been a great day so far. I was trying to get in my last bit of shopping for Christmas since we were about to depart for the mainland. Most of the shops were picked over. In the islands they ship most things in, and the good stuff goes pretty fast. The holiday tunes were playing as I looked from isle to isle scouting for Christmas treasures. Everyone was being polite and considerate in the crowded store. After waiting in the checkout line for about a half hour, I eagerly handed over my credit card to pay for the gifts that I hoped would bring a smile to a few familiar faces. So far; so good.

I was barely strong enough to carry the bags to my car since the shopping carts have long metal poles on them so you cannot remove them from the store. As I opened my car door to put the gifts inside, I accidentally bumped the car next to me. Most parking spaces in Hawaii barely give enough room to park and only compact cars fit comfortably. The car next to me was a SUV.

The lady inside jumped up and started ranting and raving that I had done it on purpose which was far from the truth. I apologized profusely twice but that was not sufficient for her. I invited her to look at the outside of her car door to see if there was any damage. She tried but there was nothing there. She continued to tell me that she was bigger than I was and that I should know better. She then said that the stupid haoles (whites) should be more careful because just one makes it bad for all the rest. By then I realized she was not so upset about her car as my race. I tried not to get emotional, but felt the blood start to rush to my head and heart. She had a small little girl in the car with her, but that did not stop her from swearing at me as she continued her verbal abuse.

I was literally shaking and trying not to get her more upset as I sat down, started the engine and started to back out of the parking space. Her steely eyes were burning a hole in the side of my car. Then I snapped. I gave her what we call in Hawaii “stink eye” and then took off. I really thought she would be right on my tail, so I maneuvered around the cars into tight spots only a small compact car could manage. I honestly felt scared and was somewhat disappointed at myself for letting it get to me, but I had.

I have already written about the annexation of Hawaii and told how the United States apologized for overtaking the islands here. The native Hawaiians still do not feel the apology was adequate for the wrongs done to them. If you look at the poll on my hub, that is obvious.

As I drove down the road, I kept looking in the rear view mirror totally expecting to see her ram into the back of my car. Terrorism is alive and well as is racism. So I learned I need to be much more careful in the parking lot. I did apologize but perhaps I should have thrown her a couple of hundred dollars too. Holiday stress is getting to us all. May you have a safe, happy, peaceful holiday.

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Comments 35 comments

elayne001 profile image

elayne001 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains Author

Thanks Ghost32 for looking at the positive side of this. aloha!

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Ghost32 7 years ago

Nicely told. One thing for sure: The best thing you did was NOT to give her money when her vehicle had not been damaged, by the same reasoning that it's never best to pay ransom to a terrorist.

elayne001 profile image

elayne001 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains Author

I appreciate your comments AnythingArtzy. It was an unfortunate experience and hope I don't experience it again. Hope she is doing better now.

AnythingArtzy profile image

AnythingArtzy 7 years ago from OHIO

I feel sorry for the woman who yelled at you. obviously she was a bitter unhappy person. How sad that something as small as a ding on a car can cause one to be so dis compassionate towards another. Don't worry about snapping for I may well have done the same thing. You did the right thing and she refused your apolgies. Her problem :)

elayne001 profile image

elayne001 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains Author

Thanks Truth. I have enjoyed it so far. Aloha!

Truth From Truth profile image

Truth From Truth 7 years ago from Michigan

That's terrible, even worse on the holidays. I hope you enjoy your holidays.

elayne001 profile image

elayne001 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains Author

Thanks for your empathy The Sablirab. Not sure who would have won since she was bigger than me, but violence is not the way to go. Words can hurt worse sometimes though. Aloha!

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TheSablirab 7 years ago

So many people are idiots and are in a rush as is. Every time Christmas comes around, and this year especially, I feel like I am on pins and needles about who might steal something from the car or who might yell at me for one reason or another. Mind you, nothing like that has ever happened to me, but it it certainly can and will happen (hopefully not) at one point in my life.

When in that type of situation, it's hard to really know how to react; how often do we expect to have someone blow up in our face like that? Just know, you are the better person and am glad to know you didn't bitch slap her. Although, I would have come close to doing it, lol.

elayne001 profile image

elayne001 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains Author

Aloha Nell Rose. We were in Scotland this summer. It was beautiful. Wish we could have made it to England. Hopefully next time. You are so right.

Nell Rose profile image

Nell Rose 7 years ago from England

Hi, Just found you by accident and I am glad I did. I hope everyone one day realises that it is only a small planet that we live on, and we should all just get on. Happy Christmas from freezing, snow clad England! cheers Nell

elayne001 profile image

elayne001 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains Author

Thank you Heavensgate for your contributions to our human welfare. It is all in the scriptures isn't it.

Heavensgates profile image

Heavensgates 7 years ago

For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against, principalities, against rulers of darkness in high places, so, put on the armour of God that you may be able to dodge these firey darts from hell. That is the word of God people. You don't need a tiki, that can only bring a curse or harm to you. You are not fighting a person, it is a Spirit. Racism, bigotry, fear, hate, etc. are territorial spirits from the pit of hell. And as Christians who have the word of God to stand on we must pray in Jesus Name and pull these evil ruling spirits down. That's one of the weapons Jesus left for us. Read your word. Read the Bible, get under some good teaching! Read, Ephesians the 6th chapter. I quoted Eph. 6: 12-13

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Madame X 7 years ago

"There are really only two races, the decent and the indecent."

Right on Right Black!!

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kverdasmith 7 years ago

My daughter lives on Kauai. She works with kids and told me that there is so much racism amongst people that are non hoales. Filippinos, blacks, hawaiians and japanese have problems with each other. The rich whites of course did a lot of damage.I guess the islands are small enough that pent up feelings have no where to go. It is sad when it is passed along to next generations. It is good in some ways to have discussions but the noting can also proliferate the idea of differences to keep us noticing. I still think it was sad that you had that jolting experience. Sometimes there is nothing we can do. Since there were threats and kids involved you did the best thing by driving off. If that weren't the case it may be favored to address the prejudice issue head on which I would think never happens in the case of this bullying woman.

Right Black profile image

Right Black 7 years ago from Huntington Beach, California

Wow, what a story. Seems like she needed to remember that Christmas is about peace and good will. I hate racism. There are really only two races, the decent and the indecent.

elayne001 profile image

elayne001 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains Author

Thanks Madame X - I appreciate your comments. I plan to have a good holiday. Hope you do too.

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Madame X 7 years ago

So few people show good grace these days. Your apology should have triggered in her at least some good manners. No, you ran into someone who has decided to live their life on a very low level. Actually, I'd say it had nothing to do with you - it was all about her and you were just a convenient target. I'm sorry you had to go through that. Have a Merry Christmas anyway - it's the best revenge :)

elayne001 profile image

elayne001 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains Author

Not sure what you mean SOBF - if it isn't racism, not sure what it is. I'm sure there is much worse - perhaps it was terrorism.

SOBF profile image

SOBF 7 years ago from New York, NY

This is racism that concerns you? Wow!

elayne001 profile image

elayne001 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains Author

Yes, I am still recovering. Will always be looking over my shoulder. Hope to forgive her soon.

Hello, hello, profile image

Hello, hello, 7 years ago from London, UK

A horrible experience and it must have shaking you up. I am sorry. Will mankind ever learn? IT IS SO SAD.

elayne001 profile image

elayne001 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains Author

I think it is about anywhere you go. With so many cultures living close together, it is a wonder we don't have more, but hopefully it will get better. Thanks lorlie6.

lorlie6 profile image

lorlie6 7 years ago from Bishop, Ca

Holiday stress doesn't excuse such absurd behavior, but I know I would have reacted the exact same way, hoping the woman would prove reasonable. I haven't been to the Islands for years, but I have had similar problems dealing with the Hispanics in Los Angeles. Perhaps I shouldn't say such things, but it is true!

elayne001 profile image

elayne001 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains Author

Thanks for all the sympathy all. I still feel bad for my reaction. Should have had a cursed tiki and let it take care of things. Thanks for the suggestion Liana.

LianaK profile image

LianaK 7 years ago

So sorry that happened to you. Lucky I wasn't there with you or that lady would have gotten it! lol...darn it. Love you mom and glad that you are safe. "stink eye" is equivalent to "evil eye" in Hawaii. For reals though--maybe you need to get a cursed tiki to carry in your car for situations like these :).lol. Love ya mom!

diogenes 7 years ago

Hi Elayne. What, please tell, is "stink eye?" I love the sound of that and I am sure it's something I could use here regularly in Essex: make a change from the "victory sign." So much fear and nastiness around today everywhere. Bob

Tammy Lochmann profile image

Tammy Lochmann 7 years ago

Oh my...What is it about the holidays that gets people so grouchy? I had a run in the day before Christmas a couple of years ago. I had a toddler and a 5 year old with me. It wasn't a racist type thing but a really hateful woman. I was trying to handle two little children in Walmart's parking lot. The toddler was not wanting to get into the stroller and apparently my 5 year old was touching the lady's car next to us (it was really dirty). She yelled at him and I apologized plus she was on the cell phone with someone and just saying some not so nice things about us to the person on the other end. I ended up having to wait until she could back out of her space to be able to leave my parked car causing me more inconvenience. The lady continued to glare at me and the kids, and my 5 year old was scared. I finally got really angry and I yelled at her "You are a real bitch and I hope I never see you again!" I got the last word in...but I didn't feel good about it.

I never do stuff like that and to have to stand there and endure it and my child being frightened I couldn't take it any more.

I now avoid going to Walmart close to Christmas time.

Thanks for this story. Good one glad you shared it!

Its Angel profile image

Its Angel 7 years ago from Charleston, SC

Racism on any scale is wrong, but it is ingrained from childhood, she is raising a child who will be just as racist because she listened to her mom and most likely her dad.

I am sorry you went through that tired, everyone should have the right to feel safe in their own space, even a car in a public lot. I like the way you handled it, and we will forget about the sign, your hand slipped :) I hope the rest of the hoiday season is peaceful for you.

breakfastpop profile image

breakfastpop 7 years ago

You are only human and I am sorry you had to experience the rage of a lunatic. Have a very merry Christmas despite"her".

Rose West profile image

Rose West 7 years ago from Michigan

Sounds like a very unpleasant experience! It is sad that some people are racist. But for the most part, I've found that most people in Hawaii are very accepting of others. If we try to understand each other and treat each other with love and respect, we can become a better Hawaii.

elayne001 profile image

elayne001 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains Author

Thanks jill of alltrades. Me too. Haven't felt that threatened in some time.

jill of alltrades profile image

jill of alltrades 7 years ago from Philippines

Racism really sucks!

I'm just thankful that you were able to get out of there unscathed.

God bless!

elayne001 profile image

elayne001 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains Author

It is sad that in this century we still have to deal with racism and hatred. I feel so sad and still in shock. Thanks for your comments Ivorwen and VioletSun. Peace.

Ivorwen profile image

Ivorwen 7 years ago from Hither and Yonder

I have friends who grew up in Hawaii, and they always say what an ugly place it was to live, because of how rude people were.

VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 7 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie

Its a shame many people keep anger and hatred alive and pass it on the next generation. You are human, and did your best to appease her, so its okay you "snapped," which is tame compared to what someone with a vile temper would have said or done to the lady's overreaction fueled by racism. And yes, racism is alive, I experienced it when I first moved to Oregon, by one lady who didn't like I am of Latin origin. I was stunned, as in speechless, as I had not experienced this type of ugliness before. The silver lining to this is, thank God not everyone is like this.

Have a very happy, peaceful Holiday and may ignorance and fear be healed.

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