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The New Paper
March 29, 2023
A woman took to Reddit recently to share about a “possibly racist” incident she witnessed while travelling on the Downtown MRT line.
The user, who goes by Yoomzster, made the post on Monday (March 27), after witnessing a lady “berating” a tourist family for taking up space with their luggage.
In the video included in the post, the woman can be heard telling the family that their bags are “clearly blocking the seat”.
She also raises her voice at them, saying they are “blocking the entrance,” and calling them “outrageous”.
When a man offscreen refutes her accusations, she threatens to call the police, accusing him of calling her a racist.
At one point, the woman is seen pointing a finger to the child seated beside her, saying: “Your parents are what your kid will grow up to be... (slightly inaudible) a brat as well.”
In the post, Yoomzster said the woman’s behaviour towards an elderly man who sat next to her, in an earlier instance, was unlike that towards the tourist – she readily moved her bag and umbrella away to make room for the older person.
The user noted that the family's luggage and bags were kept as close to them as possible, adding that they were trying their best not to take up space. Despite this, she said the woman still continued to yell at them.
Yoomzster and the family happened to be alighting at the same station at Bukit Panjang, which was when she approached the woman to tell her off, saying, "Look, your umbrella was on the other seat and the other passenger didn't have to shout at you to get you to make space. Why did you have to shout at them? Have some compassion."
In reply, she was told by the woman to “speak for yourself”.
Yoomzster shared in her post that she talked to the family after they alighted, and learnt that they were “having a really tough time finding their way since leaving the airport”.
The redditor added that she remains in contact with the family, and has asked them to contact her if they needed any help.
Many in the comments condemned the woman's actions, adding that such incidents damage Singapore’s reputation as a tourist destination.
Some also praised Yoomzster for standing up for the family.
Reflecting on the incident, the redditor told Asiaone: “I titled my Reddit post 'Encounter with a possibly racist woman' without knowing for certain if this incident is racial discrimination.
"But simply by looking at some of the comments in the post, it's clear that minorities empathise and have definitely experienced discrimination. This isn't something new.”