Where I live the words: lesbian, gay, and bisexual are used to insult people. Or like, teenagers use them, like, for serious bullying. And i hate how it really feels insulting to be called bisexual because for crying out loud, i /am/ bisexual.

“You shouldn’t have gone alone!”

In response to me telling a close male friend of mine a bad experience I had with sexual harassment during a doctors appointment.

“Are you sure you have the right room number? This is the *honors* section.”

My dad jokes with my younger sister that he remembers selling Girl Scout Cookies when he was a Girl Scout. She laughs, understanding the fact that since he’s a boy means that he could not have been a Girl Scout. Thanks, Dad. I’m a boy and a formal Girl Scout.

My chemistry teacher was in shock when i got a 103% on an exam; however, she wasn’t shocked when two white kids did well. This was kind of hurtful, but after that the teacher never doubted me.

I was standing in the cafeteria of a major academic medical center wearing shirt, tie, and the same white coat that all my medical school classmates wear (with stethoscope). An older white lady tapped me on the shoulder and asked “Excuse me do you work here? I’m trying to find the soups…” and even once I fully turned around it never occurred to her that I am medical student, not a cook.
I am a black male medical student in a major Northeast academic medical center.

In 1991, a US military helicopter piloted by Major Rhonda Cornum crashed in Iraq. She and the surviving members of the (male) crew were being held as prisoners of war. We were discussing this event in my High School Social Studies class when my teacher said “She [Maj. Cornum] probably won’t be worth much when they get her back.”

He said this as if a woman’s “worth” could be erased or diminished by by having been sexually assaulted. As if a man would be brave and stoic upon return from captivity and torture, but a woman would be somehow ruined, worthless.

Stranger:What do you do?
Me:I’m a professor.
Stranger:You’re way too young to be a professor. You look like a student.
I’m in my 30s and I dress more professionally than my colleagues. But I’m also petite and female. My male partner, who has the same age and occupation, is never told that he doesn’t look like a professor. It sends me the message that I’m an imposter, merely play-acting at being a serious scholar or authority figure. Made me feel like no one will take me seriously despite my accomplishments.

My black friends: You aren’t really black though, you act like a white girl.
My white friends: You aren’t really white though, you’re like dark.
All of them telling me I have to be one, I can’t be both. I’m just me though. Makes me feel like I can only be a certain race if I look and act a certain way.

I have a son who is autistic and I have Asperger’s myself, recently self diagnosed.

I was at work with a worker from out of town. I didn’t know her very well, but her personality really resonated with me and I enjoyed being around her the short amount of time she was there. The subject of autism came up and I got interested because I thought that she would have interesting things to say about it. Oh, was I wrong, and how glad I am that I kept my mouth shut about my son and myself, even though I feel like I should have said something.

She constantly complained about how a few students who are autistic acted like they knew everything and are authority opposers. Sure no one likes a know-it-all, but autistics and Asperger’s actually research what they want to know before spouting anything out. How she made it sound was that they were just trying to stir things up and get her angry for no reason. Then she goes off about how they get so angry and “violent” when they can’t “do whatever they want”. No, what’s actually happening is that you are disrupting their patterns and routines and it’s frustrating them because they don’t know how to divert around it and can actually send them into a panic attack. For example, what happens to me when a plan is changed or a spontaneous event occurs that will upset my whole schedule.

Maybe people should do a little research on certain brain types and mental disorders before submerging themselves into their worlds. They already feel alienated enough by people trying to make them “normal”.

My close friend is Armenian, and her father has friends in the Armenian community in Watertown, much of which is located on Franklin. In these last 24 or so hours, one of his friends have received calls, threatening or yelling at him just for being Armenian. Allegedly, these calls have blamed Armenians for helping the Russians, though this man did not help the suspects at all. Like everyone else, he was only trying to lay low and stay safe. He has received at least 5 of such calls.

I logged into Facebook and saw the memes sprawling all over my feed equating the Boston bombings to terrorists, Muslims, and immigrants. I messaged them and engaged in dialogue validating their frustration but expressing how offended I felt and how perpetuating Islamaphobia only results in more violence, especially towards people who look “Middle Eastern”. One person took it down and apologized… another talked with me for a while and ended by saying “don’t get so offended.”

“How much money would you put on the Boston bombers being Muslim?”

I’m from Ocala, FL and living in Boston. I just called my local newspaper in Florida to ask how they were being sensitive to anti-Islamic sentiment in their reporting of the Boston Incident… they accused me of being racist against southern Christians.

I felt hurt, confused, saddened. Wish people didn’t feel the need to defend and were able to listen. Wished people understood racism in its contextual nature, recognizing that stereotyping and feeling violence because of your group membership are different. Made me feel good for addressing it, but potentially hypocritical for not just understanding that people can’t be blamed for what they haven’t had the chance to learn and dissect.

Upon having seen coverage of the Boston Marathon bombing, my mother, who is white, states, “Middle Easterns… always killing everybody.” I’m Middle Eastern, early 20s, and her son. My little sisters, who are South Asian were also in the same room, and they heard that. I felt very angry, unsafe, disappointed.

Today at work, a guest was looking at the Boston Marathon newsfeed we had playing and said, “We should bomb them all! Kill them all! It’s all they understand!” I asked who, exactly, he intended to slaughter, and why. “They don’t understand anything else. My son’s in Iraq.” I’m sorry? But, that has nothing to do with the bombings! Confronted him on civil liberties and the right to trial, innocent until proven guilty. “Oh that’s hippie crap.” What?

Sitting in a library at school, I hear an African American student laughing a little loudly… followed by a white student saying, “Yo Shaq, shut up!”

This morning, the Today show did a segment on foods from around the world. They highlighted one specific food item from each place.

Some of the places named: India, Scotland, and Africa.

I hope I’m not the only one who finds this problematic.

Was biking through town when two women yelled “Konichiwa!” at me…

I’m Vietnamese. And I was born in California.

(Also, where’s the female solidarity?)

“You have access to birth control pills now. That doesn’t give you an excuse to sleep around.”

My male gynecologist. I was seventeen at the time and began taking the pill to regulate my period. I was not sexually active, and I had given no indication as to my sexual orientation. I felt awkward, sad, and resentful, because this is a man I otherwise admire and respect.

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