My mother just sent me the following “joke”:
A Russian arrives in New York City as a new immigrant to the United States . It’s11:00 AM on a Wednesday.
He stops the first person he sees walking down the street and says, “Thank you Mr. American for letting me come into this country, giving me housing, food stamps, free medical care, and a free education!”
The passerby says, “You are mistaken, I am a Mexican.”
The man goes on and encounters another passerby. “Thank you for having such a beautiful country here in America .”
The person says, “I not American, I Vietnamese.”
The new arrival walks farther, and the next person he sees he stops, shakes his hand, and says, “Thank you for wonderful America !
That person puts up his hand and says,
“I am from Middle East. I am not American.”
He finally sees a nice lady and asks, “Are you an American?”
She says, “No, I am from Africa.”
Puzzled, he asks her, “Where are all the Americans?”
The African lady checks her watch and says:
“Probably at work.”
I can’t even express just how insulting this “joke” is. It’s not funny in any remote sense of the word. Mexican people work. Vietnamese people work. Middle Eastern people work. African people work. Russian people work. Immigrants work very hard for what they have. How awful can we be as humans to put such stereotypes onto others? They are NOT a drain on society.
I started working when I was 15 years old working two jobs plus baby-sitting for a total of 30 hours a week (sometimes more) as well as going to school. This continued throughout college. When I started working full-time I also had a second job and worked a total of 50+ hours a week. Now, I do not have a job. I am on food stamps. I am on Social Security and have Medicare because of my mental illnesses that are a bitch to live with. (Being hospitalized multiple times or for over a month multiple times a year is not fun and not easy but I’d be dead otherwise.) I AM A DRAIN ON SOCIETY AND I FEEL HORRIBLE ABOUT IT.
America is made up of a variety of nationalities, a melting pot, and to point out that one nationality or person is better than another is extremely reprehensible. I am extremely disappointed that my own mother feels this way. Because of the fact that I am on some of those things listed above, I am less than. I feel less than. To have that confirmed as such by someone who has told me that I’m not but has now shown through this action and the resulting conversation…is very upsetting. I don’t even know what to do with myself right now and I feel even worse about myself and my situation as a result.
UPDATE: To be sure everyone understands, I am not trying to call-out my mom or shame her because I know multiple people that have said something like this out-right. This was solely to express my response and feelings and that’s all this is meant to do.