Thursday, March 29, 2012

Is Indonesia racist?



Indonesia is without any doubts one of the most racist countries I have ever visited. But it is racist in a different way. Not like what we know in Europe, America or in any other country of the western world. I don’t know how to call it so i will call it positive racism (but in my opinion any kind of racism is wrong).

White people are glorified here from the first moment they step out of the airport. It is very funny to watch Indonesians how horny they are when they see white face. Most of the people here treat white people as celebrities. Except Bali, there they are used to tourists, but also there we had some weird situations because of our white faces.

We went to one shopping mall when we were in Jakarta, and few days before they had some terrorist bombings in catholic churches, so policemen were all over the city, in the hotels, in public buildings and also in front of shopping malls. And they had these metal detectors through which you have to go to get inside, like in the airport. And we, a group of white asses, are going inside through the detector and every-fucking-one of us did beep. We were expecting some troubles but the policeman just smiles at us and waves at us. If I was a terrorist, this would be that lucky moment I am hoping for my whole life hehe.

They treat us the same here in Padang Panjang where we live. Everybody thinks that we are something better because we are white. Just yesterday one guy told us that we are so much smarter that people in Indonesia just because we are white, just because we are from the west. When we go to the market to buy some food everybody is looking at us with open mouth. They whole world literally stops in the moment when they see a white person. This happens all the time and we live here already for half a year. I can not even count how many people took pictures with us when we were walking on the street somewhere. This whole thing gave me one life lesson. I don’t ever want to be famous!

Maybe it sounds like fun but it isn’t heh. Everybody knows what we do all the time. Everybody is watching us all the time when we go somewhere. Everybody knows where we live. And most important thing is that they all think that we have shitloads of money, because we have to, we are white and from Europe so we have to be rich. But we are not. We have to explain all the time that we are poor students who live from the scholarship, which we are getting every month. In the beginning, when we didn’t know the prices for food in market, they always overpriced it for us. For example instead of 5 000 rupiah for 1kg of tomatoes they asked for 10 000, and for Indonesia that’s a big difference. Now we know the prices for almost everything but they still try sometimes.

Always an entourage.

 Gregi

68 comments:

  1. Don't think it's a matter of racism societies have always been reluctant when new members join in

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    1. Im afraid its racism allright. Its the difference between being white and being black. Even if you are foreigner but "black" they dont treat you in any special way. Once you are white they shit their pants

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    2. i am Indonesian....if you white and not polite,we will screw a hell of your ass too,like our ancestor screw Netherlander people and all alliance ass...as long you guys polite and nice we will friendly,nothing to do if you a damn Caucasians...

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    3. yeah, overpricing, they do that all the time..it's almost impossible to find honest seller.

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  2. I guess they just like money, heh who doesnt.

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    1. thats true, they really like money...but only money from white people hehe

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    2. err, first of all, sorry for what you have been experienced, really.. second, for the overprice-thingy, i don't think that happens because you are 'white' but most likely it's because they saw you as a foreigner who knows nothing about prices in Indonesia that they took an advantage of it. I mean, even if you are not white but you look like you're not from indonesia, say Japanese or other east asean countries, they will likely to do the same thing to you. So what i'm saying is just that, yes, it is racist; yes, it's beyond horrible; but just don't get too full of yourself

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  3. Thought provoking piece. Keep it up. :)

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  4. Maybe they want to encourage the tourism trying to make the stay of foreigners comfortable

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  5. Interesting, I hope not racism is wrong

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  6. Bro this is no more different than in the Philippines. As a flip myself seeing a white guy and watching the reactions of most people always make me laugh inside. Like they haven't seen another human being before.

    Same thing with the "positive racism", they always treat white guys as somehow 'above' them like they're better in a way. Which is true in a way, but only because of the "genetic lottery" that we have.

    I'd love to see the envy/shock of other guys faces when I bring a girlfriend (if I had one) back home. That would make my day so much hahaha.

    In the end, I think it's just like you said, Bali is used to white people because of the heavy tourist industry so that's no problem. Mainland Indonesians just have to get used to the fact of having white people around. Unless they understand that there is nothing special with a white guy buying knock off DVDs as like 1/5 of the normal price or something similar.

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    1. A white girlfrind I mean.

      P.S. Turn off word verification. Cheers.

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  7. Yeah the overpricing part sounds quite bad.

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  8. That's so unfortunate. If only they knew truly how dysfunctional the western system really was.

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  9. Hi, I am an Indian (north) and was born and raised in Jakarta, Indonesia. This is actually quite fascinating to me, reading your post and saying Indonesia has a positive racism. It's not racism if I might add, it's more of idolizing. Every society loves money and being Caucasian like you are, I assumed, it's not unlikely that the local natives will think of you as their jackpot and hiked up the price. I've been to India and trust me, Indonesia is far better in matter of racism and profiling tourists rather than India. I know I am stereotyping, but I'm just tired hearing people thinking Indonesian as racist (both positive or negative), where else they are just a poor developing country and might I say, a big fan of the Western culture. That's just my two cents - but judging from your post, I bet you had a good time when you visited.

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  10. White people are rich, cool, tall, white-skinned, smart, live luxuriously, destined to lead/conquer, etc.
    They just see something new. People react differently to a new addition in the community.
    Most of them never really know white people. They only see you on pictures or in movies.
    I observed that almost all Indonesians accept Arabs very easily into their community. Many Arabs look white. So I think it's not your physical appearance, it's your attitude and behavior that get them stare at you everywhere you go.

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  11. sorry i am telling the real life in indonesia. they are racist with black people my friends black cry every day after their class. even you are muslim or christian or poor or rich if you are black they hate you because of your skin colour but i don't know why?? that is it in indonesia they hate black people.for black students indonesia is not good destination.

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  12. I can't say I blame them - look at how black people act.

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    1. wow, how ignorant.

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    2. wow, how ignorant.

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    3. Exactly they are stupid and look like monkeys too and their music is (c)rap

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  13. You exaggeration in assessing the situation around you. No matter what race you are, but you certainly know that you are different. Even if you were an albino native Indonesia, would also be the center of attention ..
    Why?
    Actually, due to your own, the white, you are 'selling' a strange impression to many nations, through various media or film, which sold you the impression of free sex, rich, superb, even bizarre. So do not be surprised if you reap the rewards.

    Your money?
    Not only is your money .. I am a native of Indonesia and live in the city will get the same treatment when I was into the countryside. But I understand it's because of the missing information so that I can react intelligently.

    It is not true if you say people of Indonesia reacts negatively to black people! We have spare Maluku and Irian are generally darker than the other tribes, although not as black as niggers. No cases of racism against blacks, there may be some joking, but very different from the racist white skin against blacks. You have to remember, that the word, the events, and the case of racism, there was only at Caucasian country and done by white people, and not the case in other nations around the world.

    Your post, better describe the lack of social intelligence that you have ..

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    1. It seems like we offended you. From the things you have written i can see that you have experience with foreigners. Thats exactly the point we were trying to do here. moving from jakarta to padang panjang of west sumatra was even bigger shock to us as the perception of caucasians was even more lets say 'twisted'. the things we experienced and lived through are for me definitely a type of racism.

      You said it yourself the racism here and there might be different so how can you talk about lack of social intelligence when you are the one thinking that racism can just be in a aggressive form of hatred?
      Your post made many good points but it still didnt say anything about why do you think it is not racism.

      Making differences between races in any kind of form is a racism and it doesnt matter if you got it from your hollywood movies or from your granpas talk.

      We didnt intend to offend anyone by this post and if we did we are truly sorry, but you have to think outside of the box as well, look at it with your eyes opened and you might see something different too

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    2. "Making differences between races in any kind of form is a racism and it doesnt matter if you got it from ...."
      True if in the sense of "Too much ado about nothing" or "making people uncomfortable", that is what long-time isolation in insecurities (bitter and fear of returning imperialism), "homogeneity" (Indonesia is diverse but much too overwhelmingly asian and religious, big question is WHO wants to migrate there and Can they at all?), too deep religio-ethnocentrism sentiments and narrow version of nationalism can bring to mankind. Those, coupled with poverty, make ignorance in racism become like culture. Characteristic of the darker side of the world that's sadly is dominated by poor and non-white peoples (legacy of the past). Long way to catch up with the "enlightened" side of the world, which is again, sadly, is dominated by the better-off, elite but fewer white peoples. Racists in the Western world see this, use this as an excuse and try to drag the West down to this kind of culture and mentality (google the Bob Whitaker's intolerance and hate inciting mantra).

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  14. I know one thing about Indonesian.
    They like good looking person, but they hate bad smell 'Junker'
    They thing all white peeps has good smell.







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  15. lol! Maybe that's because you live in a small city. When you lived in jakarta, did you get such attentions? That's because they still didn't get used to seeing westerners. How indonesian native treats them who still chinese descent is what you should called racist.

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  16. Most (not all) of Indonesian think that:
    1. Having a white skin is sexy. that's why they were starring at you because of your skin color. Sometimes, they will ask to take a picture with you in it. (or maybe you or your friends were wearing a very short hot pants. yes! they will stare at you because it considered inappropriate in muslim community)
    2. White = RICH (???)

    Facts:
    1. Indonesia is one of the most welcoming countries. We can easily get along even with strangers we just met at coffee shop.
    2. Overprice? I don't think it happens only for white/westerners. It happens to Indonesian too. that's why we need to bargain when we buy something (except those places with fixed price)

    well, every country has their own uniqueness (either positive or negative). that what makes this world beautiful, isn't it? ;)

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  17. Just be happy you did not go there as a black person then.

    #WhiteProblems

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  18. the most beautiful clear skin is brown skin that is widely available in Southeast Asia .... Leather white = look like zombies (pale) - (not live) Negro (black) = looks like a monster hahaha_LOL

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    1. How sad. You live in ignorance and hate. I will pray for you.

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    2. I don't get racists. U spend all your time getting angry over other people's skin, but u never look to empathize with those people. You hurt their feelings, pushing them to the brink of tears and you feel no shame, no sorrow. Obviously I can't change the way you think, because that's the way you are (sadly). But tell yourself this: if it were your sibling who went through all this, how would you feel?

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    3. I am coming to your country to stick my 7 inch c##ck in your racist p**p chute's

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  19. Let's just say that African features and braids are not accepted there. My partner encountered the most foul, disgusting, vile and blatantly open kind of racism there. Staring, pointing, laughing, snickering, talking behind your back. No decency to even wait if you have left the hotel before starting the laughter, no.

    And myself, a white looking woman well-endowed above the waist but wearing oversized long-sleeved shirts and sometimes scarfs across my chest, encountered the grossest kind of sexism from both women and men. The same recipe as above: pointing, staring, laughing, snickering. Women looking hostile at you, men either like they just hit puberty or disapproving. Indonesia: NEVER AGAIN!

    We came for a holiday because my mother was born there (I'm of Javanese descent but you can't tell from my looks) and what we found on the whole (not everyone, not our guides for instance), were rude people, grossly unkind, disapproving, hostile. A look can convey and say so much. We went to Taman Mini Indonesia Indah, and all we got were stares, unkind stares, surprised stares, hostile stares, glaring, laughing. etc etc. Indonesia Indah dan orang orang kurang sopan.

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    1. hello! firstly I'd like to apologize on behalf of those rude ignorant people that laughed, snickered, stared, pointed and treated you differently as an Indonesian myself. Our kesopanan needs to improve i have to admit, indonesians aren't the best but we are learning! Please do come again and enjoy our beauty, especially the nature, which i take pride of. I deeply apologize once again! I know how awful it must have felt (i have an oriental look and i'm a kid, which most adults look down upon), i hope you have a nice day! ^_^

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    2. they sell drugs and look like apes!

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  20. I wasn't going to comment considering how old this article is, but seeing the last comment was made in May, might as well accompany that haha.
    While I agree to what you wrote in your article above, I have to disagree on one of your experiences that the securities let you through eventho you're beeping is because you are white. It's probably because the securities are (sorry I must say) just slacking off. They smiled because it's part of their service, part of their job, to smile to the people having to go through this security protocol and possibly bothering you. Assuming you and your friends didn't bring anything like a bag that they have to dive into, the securities thinks you guys are no threats and won't have any explosives on you. Although there happened to be some bombing a few days before, well, I don't know how to put this into words but you know the work ethic of some(a pretty lot of 'some's, but still can't be called a majority) Indonesians here right..
    Yes Indonesians idolize white people, everyone can see that. We Indonesians give uncomfortable stares to those white people, I too looked at white people for a while if they happen to appear on my sight. But I guess that happens because they(or we) don't see white people that often. Not only white or Indonesians, people will just look or stare at anything or anyone that they don't get to see that often. I think it's just nature instinct to observe what you don't know, learn about it and decide whether what once you have no idea what it is is dangerous to you or not. It's not always racism, most of it was just curiosity.
    Still racism is always wrong, and your blog post was really interesting to read on. I also agree to the Indian anonymous saying Indonesian here are a fan of the Western culture, how developed, hip, cool, capable the westerns and all, as we are still a developing country. This is all I've got to say, I hope you enjoy your stay in this beautiful Indonesia!

    ps. I did not realize how long this was! Apologies!

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    1. I didn't mean to sound that staring is OK, because it's not. I was just stating my opinion and thoughts when I was caught looking at people who are a bit "different", and maybe for some others too.

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  21. I'm a female living in remote Indonesia for four months and I can't explain how uncomfortable I feel when I go outside. I want to be invisible. Staring and pointing makes me feel like a freak and really bad case scenario people talking about me when I can clearly hear and understand (I have started to learn the language now) and laughing at me, never with me. If they realise I can speak Indonesian, they ask me small talk then joke about me in the local language and more laughing. I have had people phyically grabbing me and yelling at me to get a photo taken with me. And what can i do but just smile and pretend i feel comfortable. I don't feel unsafe I just wish they knew how uncomfortable they make me feel when they get so excited by me. I have feelings and no one likes being laughed at and pointed at and especially not stared at for verrrrry long periods of time. If some white people did these things to Asian people in my country, it would be without a doubt called rasicm.
    The worst thing, I can't seem to make a connection with people as friends. Ive met so many nice people but they can't treat me like a normal person so I feel uncomfortable. I don't know what to do cos I have to stay another 8 months =/ any advice

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    1. Really sympathise with you. We're two girls who have been in Indonesia for 4 weeks and are stressed about staying 2 more. We've both travelled a lot, through remote parts of India and other south east Asian countries and have never felt so much resentment. Maybe men are respected, but white women definitely not, the locals have been so aggressive and rude towards us and every shop, even the mini marts, rip us off, we need to get receipts even when we just buy water. We are constantly shouted at, touched or grabbed (despite the fact we always dress modestly) if we ask to be left alone we're told "no, you're in my country". We understand not all Indonesians are like this, we have met a handful of amazing, genuine, kind people. But the good most certainly does not out weigh the bad, it is incredibly hurtful. We are so respectful to every country and culture we visit, yet here we are just seen as objects as opposed to humans. We wish we could give you some advice, buy we're at a loss ourselves, we hope your situation gets better and you meet some genuine people. Just wanted to let you know you're not alone in your experience.

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    2. I am an Indonesian. I am really sorry for your terrible living experience here. Most Indonesian are like that (not polite and racist). Somehow they thought that they could treat visitor (from other countries) differently to how they treat the local.
      I can not change on how my people behave.
      My advise is: let them know that what they did, is not acceptable. Use clear tone that you are upset. Do not be afraid because usually locals will avoid any aggression. You do not have to make friend with bad people, do you?
      It will hard to fit in among Indonesians. I don't know exactly why. They feel uncomfortable to be with you, sometime because language boundary or religious reason or nationalist complex.
      I hope that you will find friends soon. I know it is going to be difficult but you have to keep trying.
      Loneliness in a foreign country is really bad.

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    3. Maybe about 85% indonesian never out of their country or even never out of their region, many Indonesian only know white people on TV or even for them who live in the remote area who doesn't own the TV and only know the story about white people from their neighbour, how different their skin are and how beautiful their house are, that's why they thought that all white people is rich, while the black always put as bad people, servant or gangsters. they won't believe when you said that you are american while you look like Indian what they know that American is white, they wont believe that there also poverty in western country. this stereotype comes from hollywood movie.
      Indonesian not like western people or any other countries, although they are poor they still can afford to travel abroad to the cheap country for holiday. and governments in western countries strongly support the citizens to have the experience of living abroad. I'm sure many of western people doesn't know about Indonesia before. but after some of you come to Indonesia and learn about the culture, you tell your family and your friend about Indonesia with picture and video to them. but for Indonesian, where the cheapest country they could go for a vacation?? only rich people who live in big cities who often travel to western countries or those who are poor and getting scholarships and they just told the story through the mouth without photos and videos. that why indonesian, particularly for people who live and come from remote region, so happy to meet with white people, they curious about them and curious about their culture. in remote village it's also happen when city people visit their area. I live in big city in west java. when I and my family visiting my relative in remote village in sukabumi they are so excited, they took their time to cook us many food, even the neighbour that i don't even know participated to give us some of their food. they keep give me more food until i completely full. It's their/our culture for their guest to feel completely welcome. can I blame them for that? I just accept every kindness they gave to me but you can always tell them politely if you feel uncomfortable for their hospitality.

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    5. .....continuation of the comments
      I don't know when exactly idolizing of white skin occurs in indonesia, but maybe many of you already know that this is also occurs in another South East Asia. This may occur from the hollywood movie or may have occurred since colonization by the Dutch and Portugese or another western countries whos been colonizing another part of south east asia? I don't know. because I feel embarrassed when seeing other people so excited upon meeting with white people.
      I've been read many blog about people experience of living abroad particularly in indonesia, many of them fortunate enough to be put in host family and community that understanding, but some of the other not fortunate enough until they give up and leave the country more earlier. I know It's must been hard for you to live in another country with different culture and very far away from the people who know you very well. just remember what is your reason to live in indonesia. are you live in indonesia to be an exchange student? to be an english teacher? or to be ambassador for cultural exhange? you should feel grateful that you have a chance to experience of living abroad, not many people as fortunate as you. it's can be useful for another time when you got another chance for living abroad in another country and you might would say "I've been living in situation that much worst than this before". I'm sure that before you come to indonesia, you must have done some research that this kind of thing might happen in your host site. I agree with the comment before me. if you feel uncomfortable about the stare, the laugh, the gossip, etc, etc. then it's the time for you to tell them, educate them that you don't like this kind of behaviour. tell them that you want to learn about their culture, but you also want they learn about your culture, ain't that one of the reason living abroad?. maybe you cannot change all of people in indonesia, but at least you can change people in your community.
      sorry for the bad english

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    6. The blacks are smelly apes who sell drugs and infect ebola!

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    7. Come suck my d##ck c##ck sucker @anon 7,22am

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  22. 1. Indonesian people idolizing white skin people, doesn't matter u r caucasian, turks, india, korean, japanese, they don't care about it, just your skin is all that matter.
    2. Everything is cheap. $1 equal to nearly Rp.10.000. So even the price is high enough for them, it is still nothing for westerners.
    3. So many beautiful islands, beaches, and plenty of light/dark brown skin girls. It's very easy to get laid with them, either for man looking for gf or vis versa.
    Conclusion: Indonesia is the right place for tourist or love hunters, even if u are ugly and poor compare to general standard in your own country.
    How do I know? I'm a korean man, came here for study, I've been live here for two years, although I can't speak Indonesian language, I still can get laid with Indonesian girl. They think I'm rich, in fact I'm not. Lol.
    They think I looks like korean star, in fact I don't give a shit, I just care about love that's it. :)

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  23. I think the days of this idolization are numbered. As anti Muslim sentiment grows in the USA and Europe so does the hatred for westerners in Indonesia and Malaysia. Man I won't even tell you what they do with food they serve bule in hotels and restaurants....

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  24. Well I'm black and proud! Thank God Im black! I feel sorry for you people that like the taste of white butt crack and wanna be white! Hahahahahaha! A white person to me is no different then dirty old worthless shoes.

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    1. good for you ebola aids niggerman!

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    2. I'm Indonesian and i love black people..i think they are a very warm people and have the best smile!!
      The problem is many people get lost because they receive the wrong information about black people or any race from TV..so try to change it by let them know who you really are..and give them chance to change..

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  25. I hear white people talking about how racist other countries are toward blacks, but all I've been treated in Asia is like a black God! There's not much difference between my black brown skin color and Asian skin. If any skin color stands out, it's that putrid white pale blue eyed dog smelling skin. Thank God I was not born white, its a disgusting thing to eat near a white person!

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    1. I would loved to fuck you so good if ure a lady..those smelling bastards..am black living Indonesia..the locals treat me like a God...theres no racist free country in this world.

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    2. yeah ok you fucking ebola spreading AIDS infected bovine ape

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  26. stupid bules...have you imagine why the bules fuck the ugliest girls in Indonesia?they always want a cheap pussy,they want everything very cheap.

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    1. See what I mean!! another Indonesian racist with insecurity complex.

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    2. stupid little muslim slanteye they like to fuck whites because we are rich and have big cocks and stretch your womens holes open you have little yellow pindicks haha

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  27. Dear Silan,
    Native Indonesians are racist towards the Chinese minority who lived in Indonesia for the most of their lives.
    When they hear a white person says "I love Indonesia" they will reciprocate in a good way. But when they hear this from a Chinese minority. They will call him/her names, such as Cina Babi (Chinese pigs), Cina Benalu Parasit (Chinese parasites, etc.
    They have an insecurity complex against all other races. But they only express it in a straightforward manner against Chinese-Indonesians, not Bules (White people).

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  28. Niggers aren't wanted anywhere there hated in Europe Indonesia China Thailand and Malaysia they are vile ugly trouble making drug pushing scum anywhere they get the country is fucked up look at London New York etc smelly soot niggers

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    1. I don't care that your comment is 9 months old, may I say to your small brain that not all Black people are bad. As a 15-year old Black person I am very nice and only want the best for everybody and so do other Black people. It i people like you who also contribute to the doomed world of ours. Yes, many Black people do/sell drugs, but so do other races including Caucasians. "Niggers aren't wanted anywhere" because many countries refuse to accept the fact that Black people are any more than the criminals they see on TV. Why is "drug pushing scum" the first thing you think of when you picture a Black person? If anything I might as well call you trailer trash who is high nose and can't dance. Not all stereotypes are true. May I also add that we are people too and we just want to be accepted equally. I know that this is your own messed up opinion, but please take this into consideration :)

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  29. The same thing happen everywhere all over the world..don't be a racist and spread love so they can learn.

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  30. blacks are hated in most countries. I wonder why? Maybe its due to their aggression, taking drugs, pimping, living off the country. Raping, and mugging. They need to mend their ways if they want to be treated as equals

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  31. So many trolls on here it's insane.

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  32. Yeah embrace racism,while we (blacks) embrace education remember all that stuff returns to you in a way. Pathetic pricks

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  33. We call Black "negro", White "bule"
    We like Simple Word
    " White people "
    " Black people "
    Too long

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