Damn white person

Once, when I was walking down Fordham Road, a young woman bumped into me as she was walking the other way. She apologized, and I--in a rush--kept walking. ""Damn white people,"" she muttered under her breath.

She was Latina, and I'm a young white man. I didn't respond to her apology not because of her skin tone, but because I was in a rush and because brushing shoulders with strangers is a fact of life in NYC. I wasn't bothered that she had bumped into me.

Yet, I know her assumption that my (admittedly rude) lack of acknowledgment of her apology was not irrational. Certainly, people have ignored her for being Latina. What hurt me most wasn't that she assumed I was another "damn white person," but that in many cases, she'd be correct.