Live Desk: This is the moment a New York City subway passenger defends Muslim riders from bigoted harassment.
In the video, an older Latina woman verbally attacks a man who ‘looks Indian Muslim’, asking him why he is in the United States.
‘Why are you here? Why are you in this country? You’re not one of us,’ the woman tells the unseen man by her side, who calmly defends himself.
When a fellow train passenger asks her in accented English to stop bothering him, the woman becomes combative.
No, you don’t understand; you’re not even from here,’ the woman yells.
It is at this point that Tracey Tong, 23, intervenes.
Tong asks the woman her country of origin.
‘I am from here! I was born here in America! It doesn’t matter where I come from,’ the woman yells at Tong.
Tong calmly tells the woman that she is half-Chinese and half-Latin American.
After a short pause, the woman explains to Tong that although she was born in the US her family is from Puerto Rico.
Switching from English to Spanish, Tong reminds her fellow Latina that most Americans can trace their roots elsewhere.
‘We need to stick together,’ Tong urges the woman.
As the conversation unfolds, Tong demands that the passengers be treated with respect – in any language necessary.
‘I’m asking you to please respect her,’ insists Tong. ‘In Spanish, in English, in Chinese, in French – whatever language you want me to say it, I will say it.’
Tong is being hailed a heroine after the video of the incident went viral, with more than one million views.
Her intervention joins a list of similar incidents this year.
In Kentucky, a Caucasian woman insulted two Latinas in a mall, and in Dallas, a Caucasian man verbally assaulted a Hispanic Wal-Mart employee.
Dhaka, 18 March, (campuslive24.com) //AM