Rose Williams in an interview with BBC News
A Turks and Caicos Islands student who went to the United Kingdom to attain higher education was shocked out of her wits after experiencing the unadulterated ugly underbelly of hardcore racism.
The verbal attack on the young lady was so dreadful that the BBC made it one of its primetime stories: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-wales-57349289.The incident took place on Sunday, May 30.
Rose Williams boarded a train in Borth, heading to Aberystwyth when a group of rowdy white males and females boarded the said transportation.
She said an older guy in the group, who she said was garbed in blue shirt and jeans, stopped next to where the young lady was sitting and said “hello sister,” before raising his hands in the air.
However, Williams said she ignored his puerile antics.
“He then went to his seat and said to his friends “Oi there’s a big black dog over there “to which I looked up and saw (that) he was referring to me and laughing. He then started chanting loudly: ‘There’s a dog on the train,’ and his friends joined in,” Williams told NewslineTCI.
She said the main instigator then saw that another black individual was on the train, and so he ramped up his ignorance.
“He then said to his friends: “Oh, actually there are two dogs on the train.’ Then then changed his chant to: ‘There are two dogs on the train.’ “This continued for several minutes with all of them raising their hands in the air appearing to mimic the BLM (Black Lives Matter) sign, (while) laughing and jumping up out of their seats.
“I saw the older guy in the blue polo making the Nazi salute several times, whilst chanting loudly that ‘there are two dogs on the train’,” Williams continued to recount.
She said the group further realized that there were about three persons of Asian extraction also on board the train, and so, he turned up his racism a notch.
“He then told his friend: ‘Aye, there are three mutts as well… and repeated it several times, whilst raising his hands in the air doing the Nazi salute and saying, “Hello brothers and sisters’. He then started chanting: ‘There are three mutts and two dogs on the train.’
“He went on to say other derogatory things as well, such as referring to our culture and us bringing it to Aberystwyth. This abuse lasted the entire journey which was approximately 20 minutes,” Williams explained.
Filled with incredulity at the behavior of supposedly civilized individuals, Williams revealed that as soon as she alighted the train, reported the matter to the authorities.
“As soon as I got off the train I explained what happened to a Transport for Wales’s employee on the platform, and I called the police as well and reported the incident once I had slightly calmed down in the company of my friends at a restaurant near the train station.
“My expectation from the authorities is that they will treat this incident seriously, because it was a hate crime and I believe that the people involved must be held accountable to the full extent of the law and not just get a slap on the wrist,” Williams said.
Williams told NewslineTCI that the incident bears clear that racism is alive and well in the United Kingdom.
“My key takeaway from this incident is that although there are people who claim that racism doesn’t exist in the UK, this incident is only one example of many that has occurred in the last few months. People of color are still constantly being subjected to verbal and physical racial abuse by people who hate us because of the colour of our skin.
“We all need to work together to combat and end this problem. We must not tolerate the behavior of the small fraction of people in the UK who think that it is ok to treat other human beings, who don’t look like them so disgustingly, and there should be significant consequences put in place to hold these individuals accountable for their actions,” she urged.
The authorities told the BBC that they would review camera footage of the reported incident, and anyone found culpable would face stiff penalty.