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How do you deal with a bigot?


ClementineK

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I have met a bigot. I have to live around him and study with him for a whole blinking year. He is one of the few Americans at my Japanese university. I could care less what his personal views on gays, women, other races, etc are but he treats me poorly because he knows I believe otherwise. Sometimes, I think he is just joking so I joke back but soon realize he isn't joking. I have never met anyone who was full of so much hate. I have no idea how to handle it. I have tried to ignore it but it still gets to me and I need advice on how to not let it hurt me!

 

Just one of many examples is: tonight we were leaving a building. None of us has been in this building before. I tried to open the door but it was locked and I looked for a lock but I didn't see one. Well this particular guy found the lock. It was near the bottom of the door. And I was like wow, that's an odd place for a lock. So I said, "Wow. You're so smart!" and I meant and said it in a sincere manner. He then walks out the door and utters, "It's because I have a penis." I was crushed. But I pretended not to hear him. I really don't want to fight with him.

 

I'm not interested in changing this guy's views, obviously he is dead set in his way so it'd be pointless to even try. I think it's a shame to have so much hate in one's heart but that's really his problem. My problem is how do I deal with him day to day for a whole year without going crazy. And avoiding him isn't an option. We have class together everyday.

 

Thanks everyone.

 

- Clementine

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Ugh, people like that are so annoying. You have a couple options on how you could handle this. Like magicdragon said, you could avoid talking to him as much as possible. However, I've found that people who have a big ego don't even notice when they turn people off.

 

You could react to his comments with sarcasm. For example, when he said he was smart because he had a penis, you could say "oh right, women aren't allowed to vote, run for office, become college professors or work outside the home because they just don't have the penis to handle that sort of thing" Extreme sarcasm in a way that leaves no doubt that what you are really saying is his comments are stupid.

 

Another option is to have a talk with him privately, explain that he is entitled to his own personal beliefs but he needs to keep his degrading comments towards women, minorities etc to himself. But with this approach, you can't be timid about it. You have to know what you're goinng to say ahead of time & have a slightly pissed off tone when you talk to him.

 

I would personally do the sarcastic thing. It might embarrass him enough to keep his mouth shut on things that offend people.

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Stop taking him seriously. Don't speak to him or acknowledge him any more than necessary, and certainly don't let his ridiculous comments upset you. Just let it roll off your back when he says something stupid. He is a miserable little man that will probably spend much of his life alone because he simply doesn't know how to treat others with love and respect. He is obviously narrow-minded and insecure about himself. Maybe he fears you because he knows you're smarter than him. In any case, I wouldn't regard anything he says as anything more than something a mentally handicapped person might say. you're better than him.

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I feel if I ignored him or reacted with sarcasm I would just be stooping to his level. I don't think he would notice like, alli said, and the sarcasm would fuel the fire. I certainly thought about speaking with him privately, though. I really would like to look past our difference and be friends with him or at least tolerate each other on a decent level.

 

Somehow I get the feeling that he would be a very interesting person if you could somehow get to know him past all the walls he has placed around himself.

 

I agree.

 

Stop taking him seriously. Don't speak to him or acknowledge him any more than necessary, and certainly don't let his ridiculous comments upset you. Just let it roll off your back when he says something stupid. He is a miserable little man that will probably spend much of his life alone because he simply doesn't know how to treat others with love and respect. He is obviously narrow-minded and insecure about himself. Maybe he fears you because he knows you're smarter than him. In any case, I wouldn't regard anything he says as anything more than something a mentally handicapped person might say. you're better than him.

 

I'm not sure how to let it roll off my back. What he says makes me feel really hurt. I'm usually pretty good at letting stuff slide but... this pushes a sore spot, I guess. How do you not let things get to you?

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You just have to detach your emotions from what he says. Sometimes you just have to do that. To force yourself to not care what certain people say. It's just words and the opinion of one idiot. If he says these things and he knows they get to you, then he's won. You just can't let him irk you.

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