These 29 People Regret Accidental Racist Moments

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Anyone can be guilty of saying or doing racist things. It’s called accidental racism and as long as you recognize it and apologize for it, then you should be fine. If not, whatever situation you’re in will probably become totally awkward and you’re going to want to sneak out of there as soon as possible.

The obvious can be stated: don’t make fun of the way people look or dress, the way the act or have been raised, and especially their culture. Culture is such a sensitive topic and if you don’t fully understand where someone else is coming from, don’t assume that you can say whatever comes to mind without consequences. If someone’s taken offense to what you’ve said, maybe you should sit down and re-evaluate why you’ve said it in the first place and listen to what they have to say and why it was so hurtful.

We’ve all been guilty of it and there’s no denying it in this day and age. We’re living in an overly sensitive social and political climate, where race is a huge issue on people’s minds. So yes, there’s going to be a slip up once and a while. People will be more offended nowadays by what’s said in casual conversation than ever before, so choose your words carefully.

These 29 people regretfully admit their accidental racist moments:


In 3rd grade we had to draw a portrait of a classmate. I got Brian, the only black kid in class. I drew a big black circle with a blue t-shirt. My drawing was the only one not on exhibit at parent night.


I work in a two-story office building. An Asian guy in his early 20’s came up to our floor with a food order that was meant for an office on the first floor. I was asked to lead him to the correct office. We rode the elevator down together, made small talk over how much we hate our jobs, and then I walked him over to the office that placed the order. Upon entering, I announced “Who ordered Chinese food this early?” The woman who was there to receive and pay for the food said “Not us” with nervous hesitation. It wasn’t until I started walking out to return to my office that I saw the coffee cups, toast, wrapped sandwiches, and other assorted breakfast items you’d get at a deli that he was carrying.


I have a really bad habit of never looking at people’s name tags. When I started working at a restaurant, the black girl who was training me was named Keanna, but for some reason I heard that as “Kenya.” For weeks after that, I’d always call her Kenya. She was too polite to say anything about it, so one of the other servers finally pulled me aside to talk to me about it. Apparently, everyone thought that was just my nickname for her, and she found it offensive. I felt horrible, but I couldn’t just explain that I hadn’t bothered to look at her name tag, because that’d sound like a bullsh*t lie.


Not mine but my brothers. He was five years old and standing in line at a clothing store when he noticed a little black boy in a white winter coat with fur lining. He pointed at the boy and looked up at my mother and asked, “Mom why is that women carrying around a monkey.” The women flipped out and my mom feeling terrible just left the store.

Written by Irvi Torremoro

Irvi Torremoro is an Austinite by way of Las Vegas. She's worked in various outlets in food & beverage and is now focused on writing, eating all the things, talking about Beyonce, and petting all the puppies. She runs, a lifestyle blog about people in the service industry.