Racism in Bay Area? Really?

LinkedIn / Eng FBnew
Aug 24 114 Comments

I lived in a Republican southern state for 20 years, and recently moved to Bay Area for a new job. I am an immigrant and I was hoping Californians to be more open-minded towards immigrants than any other place. As a matter of fact I have never felt racism in USA until I moved to CA. I don't want to generalize it to whole CA though. I only saw Silicon Valley so far. Here in the valley, the white Americans make me feel like a foreigner, although I am a citizen. They, when talking about themselves, start their sentences "we americans blah blah...". The word 'americans' is always emphasized. Or keep asking "where are you 'originally' from?" Or " you as an international blah blah blah". Those are only a few examples I know, but I cannot describe their condescending tone in general. I have never felt that way in any other place and I am almost 50 yo. I also witnessed some mild racism against other nations. In the apartment complex I live, there is a white middle aged woman who keeps cherry picking and bashing brown kids and she is always kind to whites, unless they are immigrants of course. Actually, I have seen several other examples of immigrants being treated differently by locals here in Silicon Valley. What the heck is going on? Am I getting too sensitive or the racism is really that prevalent in Bay Area?

Update: based on responses, I think my point is totally missed here. I am talking about the way these questions are asked. There is a ton of different ways of asking a question. Of course you can ask a person where she is from. Please don't cherry pick that single question. It is not the particular questions you get but the way you are treated. An outsider! Also, I know that if you go anywhere else in the world, probably you will get more dangerous versions of racism. USA is still one of the best place for immigrants. At least, you can call yourself American and most people will be OK with that.

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TOP 114 Comments
  • New / Mgmt
    griesrt1

    New Mgmt

    PRE
    Flipboard
    griesrt1more
    It’s a scam. The leftists are the real racists. Lol Welcome to the bay.
    Aug 24 6
    • WeWork RPvk36
      Listen to some of zizek’s lectures, he has an interesting point of view on this
      Aug 24
    • New QTdN03
      The irony is all the liberals calling Trump a “racist” are the actual racists, and Trump would probably treat you the same way he treats everyone.
      Aug 24
    • Yelp / Eng sJJv80
      What are you all smoking?
      Aug 24
    • New QTdN03
      I don’t smoke.
      Aug 24
    • Yelp / Eng sJJv80
      Could’ve fooled me.
      Aug 25
  • Amazon 8yf468
    Subtle racism is very common and it is deep rooted and that's how people are brought up here. My day isn't complete without a daily dose of racism here in Seattle. It's also called "I'll smile a little less at you because you are of a different color than I am". But I am an Indian and I joke that I take 5x salary for the same work I would do in India just to tolerate the racism.
    Aug 24 11
    • Cisco thhhinkskk
      Indians in India treat you differently based on your religion, caste and color. US treats brown people better than that.
      Aug 24
    • LinkedIn ex-fb
      @Cisco
      And Indians in the US whine about how racist the US is st every opportunity, while never admitting that India is way more bigoted.
      Aug 24
    • Amazon uaqh79
      That is interesting
      Aug 24
    • Google / Mgmt
      crazypgm

      Google Mgmt

      PRE
      Microsoft
      crazypgm more
      You sound immature. Just because someone didn’t smile at you , it’s racism?? Geez get a grip
      Aug 24
    • Expedia Group / Eng interviewm
      What's your caste?
      Aug 25
  • Google / Eng n5Vhe9p
    Yes. White women are the worst in California
    Aug 24 3
    • Facebook qwertyuip
      Valley girls are hot though
      Aug 24
    • Google / Eng n5Vhe9p
      Most are just lard asses
      Aug 24
    • New / Mgmt
      griesrt1

      New Mgmt

      PRE
      Flipboard
      griesrt1more
      Whut no
      Aug 25
  • Uber bаe
    Racism is worse in the Bay Area than in Texas. I went there for graduate school and everyone was nice to me. In Bay Area I’ve heard “go back to your country” more than a few times from cowards in their cars driving away.
    Aug 24 5
    • LinkedIn / Eng FBnew
      OP
      Texans are really nice people.
      Aug 24
    • New / Eng
      wEMi222

      New Eng

      PRE
      Albertsons
      wEMi222more
      Texas is a huge state. Depends on where in Texas, like Dallas, you'll get the remark "go back to where you came from". Go anywhere north and/or west of San Antonio or east of Houston and you'll experience hardcore racism.

      Austin tries to be progressive, but once you step into the outer parts (even round Rock), you'll hear some nasty remarks there too.

      Racism in the bay is universal. I've heard Asian and Indian kids making fun of white kids for being dumb, black and Latino accusing and pestering Indians of being Arab terrorists, Asians talking smack about other types of Asians.

      If any time I see or have heard of white people being racist in the bay, it's the old bitter ones or the transplants
      Aug 24
    • Google / Eng n5Vhe9p
      Racism goes up when diversity is up. Irony isn't it. It's instinct that people hate each other.
      Aug 24
    • Illumio BroCodeGuy
      I’ve heard go back to your country from black people near Oakland...
      Aug 25
    • Gusto eastmont
      I think they tired of rent going up and assume youre the cause
      Nov 12
  • Google yourtcsux
    Where are you from?
    Aug 24 4
    • LinkedIn / Eng FBnew
      OP
      USA
      Aug 24
    • Google / Eng hooli.xyz
      But where are you ‘originally’ from?
      Aug 24
    • Amazon uaqh79
      Mostly Europe to my knowledge.
      Aug 24
    • LinkedIn / Eng FBnew
      OP
      There is always at least one smart a.. in every group 😉
      Aug 24
  • Microsoft Nrrrr
    Racism is real in the Silicon Valley. Not only do you suffer racism in the streets, but we are also getting it directly from our leadership. There are a lot of white nationalist managers who are doing everything in their power to cleanse the workforce of immigrants, females and people of color. It’s a shame that you have to put up with disparaging comments and retaliation from your boss and the company turns a blind eye!
    Aug 24 3
    • New / Eng
      wEMi222

      New Eng

      PRE
      Albertsons
      wEMi222more
      White nationalists in tech as managers here in the bay?! That doesn't sound right at all. Anywhere else, maybe... I've had more Indian and Asian managers across a number of companies here than any other race
      Aug 24
    • LinkedIn ex-fb
      And what about Indian managers?
      The average racism of Indians is way greater than the average racism of all white people by 100 times or so!
      Aug 24
    • Cisco thhhinkskk
      ^This is so true. I have been treated differently because I'm from a Southern state of India. It's highly probable the other way is true as well.
      Clean your mess before pointing at others!
      Aug 24
  • Adobe / Eng keeendjs
    I like to ask people who look like they have a different heritage or sound like they have a different heritage where they are from because I'm genuinely curious about the rest of the world. Should I stop doing that and find other things to talk about?
    Aug 24 7
    • Yelp deadsea
      I suspect it's just so much more normal to meet people from outside of the states here that you just assume as much. I get this a lot - I'm brown but not Indian. People in California always assume I'm from India just because the majority of people who are brown and live here are from India. I don't know if it's deliberate racism as much as people stereotyping.
      Aug 24
    • LinkedIn ex-fb
      @Adobe
      So just because one person claims it is offensive, you want to change your questions!
      There is absolutely nothing offensive about asking immigrants or even second generations where they are from. Those who don’t want to answer may decline
      Aug 24
    • imec / R&D upi
      I hate it when people get offended
      If I ask them where they're "originally" from, or what their ancestral heritage is. I think our ancestral roots define us in some direct and indirect ways, and it helps me understand, appreciate and connect with a person better.
      Ps: I'm an immigrant myself
      Aug 24
    • Salesforce / Eng namehere1
      I think bro just wanted to be accepted as an American instead of a foreigner but let me tell you, with an accent someone will always identify you as a foreigner. Now imagine being Mexican brown in Russia, even tho he speaks fluent Russians, them Russians are still gonna think he brown.
      Aug 24
    • LinkedIn / Eng FBnew
      OP
      @namehere1, thanks! The country I was born is way worse than CA in terms of racism. And that's why I left there forever 😁
      Aug 24
  • Amazon uaqh79
    Southern hospitality is a real thing
    Aug 24 1
    • Autodesk BQHf02
      Went to SC. Can attest this
      Aug 25
  • Procore Obama2024
    People in California think they are woke but they aren’t. The south is more woke as black and white people interact a lot more. Yes, there are white people who don’t like black people but at least they own it and are up front. In California they will pretend to like everyone and then show up in disguise at a Proud Boys rally.
    Aug 24 4
    • Amazon uaqh79
      This
      Aug 24
    • Facebook JVOT31
      This. Totally agree.
      Aug 24
    • New / Mgmt
      griesrt1

      New Mgmt

      PRE
      Flipboard
      griesrt1more
      This. Segregation is high here. In the south You absolutely do interact with everyone.
      Aug 25
    • The Home Depot FPQk51
      John Oliver actually pointed out that schools in NYC are more segregated than the ones in the South. That’s a fact.
      Aug 25
  • LinkedIn ex-fb
    If you have to make such a big fuss when someone is curious about your national origin , problem is you and not the Bay Area.

    If you’re an immigrant, you did immigrate here from somewhere. Stop over reacting!
    Aug 24 4
    • Goldman Sachs mcarfy
      For real, sometimes I just get curious and want to learn more about people who are clearly different than me
      Aug 24
    • Google yourtcsux
      It depends when OP came over here. I can understand this if he came rather young and grew up here. I’m sure people in that situation still get these kinds of questions and it can be aggravating. Otherwise, I could see how someone might find the response of OP as obnoxious.
      Aug 24
    • LinkedIn / Eng FBnew
      OP
      @mcarfy, it is fine to be curious and ask.
      Aug 24
    • LinkedIn / Eng FBnew
      OP
      @ex-fb, Did you even read the whole post? For God's sake 🙏 Looks like you only read that single question and ignored all the rest.
      Aug 24
  • Visa / Product plane
    Yes - lived in southern US state before Bay Area. There aren’t any stupid/hillbilly racists here but a lot of the smart/well-educated kind of racists (which are worse...)
    Aug 24 0
  • Oracle
    not_larry

    Oracle

    PRE
    Amazon
    not_larrymore
    Nothing new. Liberals are the worst racists.
    Aug 24 0
  • Amazon CloneFear
    I am Indian American man and have seen subtle racism whenever I de-board the plane. The air hostesses (esp white women) never or very rarely smile or say bye to me but always to the white people and black people in line before me.
    Aug 25 12
    • Microsoft manoi
      Because it's some innocent indian's fault that some indians believe in the caste system? All indians should be subject to racism because there are some racist indians?

      Every point I made seems to have gone over your head. You're the racist that you're complaining about. See the irony in yourself.
      Aug 25
    • LinkedIn ex-fb
      If that innocent Indian isn’t readily acknowledging how racist his culture is then he’s part of the racism.

      Also if Indians don’t have a recourse for racism because Indian culture is racist, that will forcibly bring about a change in culture as they feel the heat of racism themselves.
      Aug 25
    • Splunk tgrmqw
      I can see how embarrassed and ashamed ex- fb is to be of Indian origin. There are many healing techniques which can help you.

      No need to be so angry.
      Aug 25
    • LinkedIn ex-fb
      doesn’t change the fact that Indians are among the most racist people on the planet.
      Aug 25
    • Facebook / Eng Zuckurberg
      I agree that Indians are the most racist being an Indian myself. But at the same time I don't want to be discriminated because I am an Indian. I agree those Indians who are not ready to fix the casteistism in their own community (they still go to temples where only Brahmins are allowed to become preist, even their worship to God is racist) have no rights to speak against racism against them. If so they are hypocrites.
      Aug 25
  • Facebook / Eng Zuckurberg
    When Indians whine about racism in US upon them and at the same time, how they treat fellow Indians in US.

    https://pulitzercenter.org/reporting/no-escape-caste-these-shores-untouchables-india-say
    Aug 24 8
    • Facebook / Eng Zuckurberg
      Most of the Indians are casteist and that is how they were brought up. It is a fact. I am still waiting to see Indians giving up their caste identity.

      Just by calling out that most of the Indians are casteist, I don't become a racist. I will become a racist when I start discriminating Indians in the ways I treat them.

      I guess you need some social science 1:1
      Aug 25
    • Lockheed Martin / R&D Schz3
      I never said you are a racist. I said generalizations are fuel for racism. Racism is a state of mind in a moment, not a trait. Holding generalizations make it easier to behave in a racist way.

      Example: you see an Indian at work fire another Indian. Perhaps you assume there is a casteist motivation and as a result distrust this person more than you would have had you heard the firing was because of embezzlement.

      Or maybe it is a castesist thing and the manager would not have fired a white guy in the same situation. You do not know but holding a generalization makes it more likely you will make the assumption that it is. The generalization makes it more likely to assume something about someone that may not be true.

      That is what I mean by it fuels racism.
      Aug 25
    • LinkedIn ex-fb
      You are correct Facebook.
      I’m Indian. Indians are the most prejudiced and bigoted people on the planet.
      Aug 25
    • Lockheed Martin / R&D Schz3
      Does that mean EVERY Indian is bigoted and predjudiced ? 
      Aug 25
    • LinkedIn ex-fb
      Did someone say EVERY Indian is bigoted?
      Stop extrapolating on your own.
      Aug 25
  • Cisco thhhinkskk
    Only going to request you to make a judgement after having more experiences. I have recently moved to CA too from the East coast and I find it very welcoming to people of color including me.
    Aug 24 0
  • Splunk tgrmqw
    May be the Americans who are treating you like this is originally not from California. These are the folks giving California a bad name.
    Aug 24 2
    • LinkedIn / Eng FBnew
      OP
      I hope that's true my friend.
      Aug 24
    • Google / Eng n5Vhe9p
      It's usually the people who actually grow up in the place where there are a lot of immigrants. As their stereotypes will get validated more often than those not. Therefore these people are more racist, especially when they take liberal cover
      Aug 24
  • New / Eng
    Onwy04

    New Eng

    BIO
    Software Engineer.
    Onwy04more
    Racism is deeply rooted in American history, and there’s not part of this country that’s exempt from it. The Bay Area may be more “forward thinking” but it still exists even from “so called” allies. The only different is overt vs covert racism.

    I went to school in Mississippi, when people were racist.. I knew about it and could see it. Bay Areans, or other “progressive” places, mask it pretty well. And it won’t be as in your face.

    I’d prefer the former, because I don’t have to guess who is and who isn’t.
    Aug 25 0
  • Facebook JVOT31
    Speaking from my experience in Bay Area, there’s always a thin wall between the Americans (or even American-born) and the internationals. Bay Area is definitely more conservative than people think
    Aug 24 1
    • LinkedIn / Eng FBnew
      OP
      Excellent description! A 'thin wall' between american-born and the others.
      Aug 24
  • American Express D.BCooper
    Least in the South people are honest with you about racism.

    Always passive aggressive or backhanded racism in the Bay.
    Aug 25 0
  • Twitter jkkugdyh
    Liberals are way more racist than conservatives or moderates
    Aug 25 3
    • Procore Obama2024
      Source?
      Aug 25
    • Twitter jkkugdyh
      It’s literally in the graphic dude
      Aug 25
    • not saying that liberals are less racist than conservatives by any means, but these statistics don't really mean anything... First of all, the data is all self-reported. Obviously people constantly under fire and being labeled as "racist" will use "having black friends" as a way to deflect. Secondly, conservative areas, specifically the southeast, has a much higher concentration of black people. I grew up in a pretty liberal place with little to no black people (there were 2 black people in my grade of 400 people). I didn't make a black friend until college. However, growing up, I had many hispanic friends since my high school was 30% hispanic.

      Lastly, knowing or having friendly relationships with specific black people doesn't mean someone can't be racist lol. It's literally the fallback argument of every racist. "I can't be racist cus I have a black friend!" or "I can't be racist, my cousin's boyfriend is black!".
      Aug 25

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