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Heh.

Throwaway account of sorts here. I too am a South Asian who has been in the US for quite a while, and have lived in both red and blue states. I used to live in South Asia and the Middle East.

In my experience, Americans (of all races, including whites), are a ton more welcoming than I've seen anywhere else (well, except Canada of course). In fact, the most welcoming community I lived in was in a red state.

In contrast, people in the countries I lived in are much, much more overtly prejudiced. Here in the US I have no problem having a conversation with pretty much anyone - be they of another race or wealthy or in poverty. In South Asia those who were of a different social class were simply invisible. You don't get to interact much with those higher than you, and everyone pretends the poor simply don't exist.

And so much is dictated by your ethnicity/tribe.

I remember the situation in the US after 9/11. There were bad things happening across the country against people of Muslims or those suspected of being Muslims. But the majority were supportive. I remember my Saudi friend remarking "You know, if white people had done something like this in our country, it would not be safe for them to leave their home. And here I am not worrying at all about being outside. I know the majority has my back."

In over 20 years of living in the US, I've never had someone overtly treat me in a racist manner. Yet back home being treated in a prejudicial fashion was the expectation. Life's simply a lot better in the US.

Clearly, the US has lots of prejudism/racism issues. And it's visible. And you can see it in the statistics. And in my experience it has gotten worse in the last few years. We're not saying the US is alright. But when I look globally, the US is definitely in the better half, and probably pretty high in the better half.

Oh, and if you want an idea of how bad things can be even in Western Europe, I strongly encourage you to listen to Epsiode 684 of This American Life ("Burn it Down"): https://www.thisamericanlife.org/684/burn-it-down

You can see the transcript on the site.

Some of the stuff described there would be pretty outrageous/scandalous in the US. The difference isn't that sutff like this doesn't happen in the US (it probably does), but how the public reacts to it when it becomes mainstream news in a major city.

Oh, and just on the side: We South Asians are not really any better. I can't tell you how many times a fellow South Asian in the US complains about racist white people, and then has no problem making racist remarks about Chinese and African Americans. And when called out on it simply dismiss it with "Well that's just the reality!"




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