Washington, March 19, 2017: An American man has been charged with assaulting an Indian-origin man and tossing racial rebukes, erroneously conceiving him for a Muslim man. Jeffery Allen Burgess, a 54-year-old man living in Pennyslavia has been accused of disparaging and harming Ankur Mehta on November 22 because of his deemed race, color, and nationality.
Burgess was arraigned on a hate crime charge by the federal grand jury in connection with the alleged assault at a Red Robin restaurant in South Hills Village as reported by the Pittsburg Tribune. The arraignment was announced by the acting Assistant Attorney General Tom Wheeler of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division and acting US Attorney Soo C Song for the Western District of Pennsylvania announced the indictment.
In the interim of the incident, police reported that Burgess was sitting next to Mehta inside the Red Robin restaurant when he began insulting him and then repeatedly elbowed him in the head. He further rebuked Ankur Mehta saying, “I don’t want you sitting next to me…You people.”The onlookers told the Bethel Park Police that Burgess was constantly him anti-Muslim slurs.
Mehta was treated at the St. Clair Hospital for a laceration to the upper lip and a loose tooth after Burgess struck Mehta 4-5 times repeatedly.
Besides the racial slurs, Burgess told Mehta that “things are different now” said police which authorities suppose was an excerpt from Donald Trump election speeches.
The accused is convicted with 10 years imprisonment, a fine of $250,000 or both. Additionally, ethnic intimidation, public drunkenness, and simple assault have been also charged to him stemming from the same incident.The racial discrimination is spurring in the states after Donald Trump’s declaration of a ban on migrants.
The racial discrimination is spurring in the states after Donald Trump’s declaration of a ban on migrants. There have been a series of hate crime incidents hitherto in the United States. On February 22, Indian nationals Srinivas Kuchibhotla and Alok Madasani were shot at a bar in Olathe, Kansas, by a man shouting “get out of my country”. Another incident where a Sikh American was shot and injured on March 3 in Kent, Washington, by a gunman who fiercely told him to “go back to your own country.
– Prepared by Naina Mishra of Newsgram, Twitter: Nainamishr94
Kamal Al Solaylee’s book Brown highlights the problems of ‘brown’ people in Trump’s rule
Donald Trump is often accused of malingering the image of brown people
this book cites many examples of discrimination which brown people go through
Title: Brown: What Being Brown in the World Today Means (to Everyone); Author: Kamal Al Solaylee
All our social development and our technological advancements don’t seem enough to eradicate our long-persisting atavistic sense of difference based on appearance, which though long-suppressed is now emerging free from its restraints — as proved by the recent intemperate comments by US President Donald Trump on immigrants from a certain set of countries.
Trump’s thinking, as seen in his off-the-cuff remarks, underscore that the questionable classification of race, expressed by the obviously evident and inescapable feature of a person’s skin, is well alive — and extends beyond the white-black binary. What about the yellow, or rather, the (as necessary for the global economy but far more exploited) brown?
Trump is only one leading manifestation of the malaise facing brown people — which include West Asians, Latin Americans, North Africans, and South and Southeast Asians — and far beyond the West too or from the “Whites”, says Yemeni-origin, Egypt-bred, Canadian journalist-turned-academician Al Solaylee in this book.
Trump’s victory “largely (but not exclusively)” rode on demonising Mexicans, galvanising sentiment against Muslims and championing white nationalism, the vote for Brexit was mostly pioneered by those with a restrictive view of Englishness, the record of Canada under Stephen Harper’s Conservatives — all these are obscure racial conflicts brewing in the US and Europe for decades now.
“Examine these tensions closely and you’ll find a strong anti-brown sentiment at the core,” says Al Solaylee as he traces the response to, as well as the experiences of, the residents of Global South, who are forced to migrate to — and much needed in — the Developed North for various reasons, not least of which is the latter’s colonial record.
“Brown as the colour of cheap labour continues on a global scale… brown bodies undertake the work that white and older immigrant Americans refuse to do (and those black slaves were forced to do in previous centuries).
These are low-skill, labour-intensive jobs in unforgiving climates,” he says, but also that these are not limited to the Western nations but also in the more affluent parts of Asia itself too.
“This is now our destiny as brown people. Our labour is needed, but citizenship is denied; our presence as Muslims or religious minorities is offered as an example of the tolerant, diverse societies in which we live, but we continue to be feared,” says Al Solaylee.
And there is no difference whether this is deliberate or mistaken as he goes to cite the cases of the racist slurs on Sikh volunteers feeding the homeless in Manchester in the wake of the May 2017 terror attack, or the fatal shooting of Indian techie Srinivas Kuchibhotla in the US in February 2017 by an American who thought he and his friend were Iranians and screaming at them to “get out of his country”.
Al Solaylee contends we think of brown as a “continuum, a grouping — a metaphor, even — for the millions of darker-skinned people who, in broad historical terms, have missed out on the economic and political gains of the post-mobility, equality and freedom”. They are now living, he says, among former colonial masters where they are “transforming themselves from nameless individuals with swarthy skins into neighbours, co-workers and friends”.
And it is their story he tells — both in their homes from the Philippines to Sri Lanka and workplaces from Hong Kong to the Gulf as well as Western Europe and North America.
Al Solaylee, however, starts with first recounting his own childhood experience on learning he is brown after seeing an English movie featuring a white child and coming to terms with “brownness” in his journeys around the world and interactions with other browns (fairness creams figure largely as well as the concern that he settle down) as well as Brown’s significance in nature and culture.
He then takes up the human obsession with race, despite the concept being debunked, except in politics before his exploration of the experiences and consequences of being brown around the world.
A stirring travelogue, incisive social and political comment and a passionate cry to rise above unavoidable consequences of geography and genes, this invaluable work rises in importance beyond its subject to be a seminal guide to the world today — and what it will soon be — particularly the US. IANS