racist microaggressions

Racist microaggressions are super common, no matter which country you’re in. A lot of people assume that because it’s more lowkey, it isn’t counted as racism, when it really is.

Common microaggressions include things like, “you’re so pretty for a (race, like Black, Hispanic, Asian etc.) person!” or “your English is so good!”

Although it may seem like a compliment, it really isn’t. Telling a BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, Person of Colour) that they’re “pretty for a (Black, Hispanic, Asian etc.) person” just makes White seem like the default and implies that usually BIPOC aren’t attractive, or are less than White people.

Telling a BIPOC that their English is “so good” isn’t a compliment either. It implies that being a BIPOC typically means you’d be bad at English. Although a lot of BIPOC don’t speak English, this doesn’t mean that you should be surprised when they can.

Microaggressions are so common, yet they go unrecognized. Microaggressions can be said by friends, family, teachers, fellow students/peers, strangers, colleagues, bosses etc. and are typically thought of as compliments.

Calling out a microaggression often results in comments like “you’re being too sensitive,” “it was just a joke,” “you make everything about race,” “it was a compliment”. If you get told these things, never listen to them. Nobody has the right to tell you how to feel, especially if they’ve never experienced it before.

Call out not only microaggressions and racism, but all forms of injustice. Don’t stop calling it out. Donate as well if you can, sign petitions, use your voice and whatever privilege you have. Educate your friends and family, strangers too.

Most importantly, listen. Listen to minorities when they speak about discrimination they face as an individual and as a community.

Continue to educate yourself, too.

Learn, unlearn, relearn.


Written by Charlize Janjua