If You’re a Racist, Take This Photo
On October 10, 2015, at 10am, I was sitting in a café near the Art Museum with a paid translator, side by side, typing a Chinese document into English, with her help. The meeting was actually paid work for her.
At 8pm on October 10th, that very same night, I walked down a sidewalk in town with a platonic female friend, having just eaten dinner. We passed through the outdoor seating area of a Donutes café and went to a nearby shop.
At around 815pm, the platonic friend received a Line message from a gal she knows, and that gal had sent her a photograph via Line. Astonishingly, the photo her friend sent was a photograph of her and me walking through the Donutes seating area 15 minutes before! How on earth did that friend get a photograph of the two of us?
Then that very same friend immediately sent my platonic companion a second photo via Line, but the second photo astonishingly was of me and the translator from 10am that morning, working at a café in the Art Museum area.
How on earth did her friend have a photograph of me and the translator with whom I was working? The whole event was mindboggling unbelievable.
Lo and behold, the friend who had sent both photos had been given the photos from her husband. It turns out that the husband is a member of a Line chat group whose sole purpose, apparently, is to post pictures that group members take OF FOREIGN MEN IN KAOHSIUNG SEEN WITH LOCAL TAIWANESE WOMEN! That day, someone had posted the morning photo taken of me and my translator to the chat room on Line, and later that evening, someone else had posted a photo of me and my female friend walking through the Donutes café on MingChen Road at night.
Later, my friend and I walked passed the Donutes again, and there we saw five men sitting. We noticed the clothing of one man was the same clothing pictured on a man’s arm that was showing in the photograph of my friend and I that was posted in the Line chat group. It was clearly the same guys who’d taken our photo. My friend departed, but I turned around and returned to the table: I opened the photo on my phone (which my friend had sent me) and went up to their table. I pointed at the man’s clothes shown on my phone—and then pointed at the same man sitting at the table, and I asked in Chinese, “Is this you here in this picture? Why are you in this picture on my phone and my friend and I are shown here?” I pointed at the phone. I pointed at them. The men knew they’d taken the photo. The angle of the photo was clearly from one of that man’s friends across the table.
Instead, the man looked away from me, looked at his friends, and in Chinese said, “What’s this foreigner saying? I don’t understand.” He and their group refused to even acknowledge me. They repeated to each other, “What’s he saying?” but they didn’t even look at me. A group of five men didn’t have enough courage to explain themselves. They didn’t have the balls to admit to their wrongdoing. I walked away because I knew they would not even discuss what they’d done wrong.
My friend later told me they’re probably the type of Taiwanese men who sit on computers playing video games all night and cannot get a girlfriend, so they have nothing to do but complain about Taiwanese women who spend time with foreign men—and then they erroneously label women here as “western dick girls”, “western menu girls”, and “CCRs”. Their behavior is stupid. Its narrow-minded ignorance. Such actions are xenophobic. Such men are racists. Posting such photographs is libelous, and it hurts the people involved, people who have done nothing wrong. If you take a photo of me and it is plasters the Internet, make sure you post if to social media and news agencies with this message:
Stop the ignorance and get over the fact that some foreigners live here! I cannot wait for the day that the world (and this includes Taiwan) is so diverse and internationalized that racism and intolerance is at a bare minimum. The more expatriates from all over the world move to Taiwan, the more diversified the society will be, and this should lessen the racist ignorance! For now, open your mind! IF YOU SEE A FOREIGNER WITH A FRIEND, SPOUSE, COLLEAGUE, ACQUAINTANCE, LOVER, ETC., GET OVER IT. POST THAT TO SOCIAL MEDIA!