A man in Queens, New York was caught on video going off on a racist tirade against a MuslimUber driver. The troubling video is yet another incident of hateful harassment—which has spiked since Trump won the election.
In a Facebook video shared by Karim Metwaly (which you can watch above), a man driving a white SUV is seen berating another driver at a stop in Astoria, Queens.
The video begins with the driver yelling, "Fucking Arab motherfucker! Terrorist fucking cock-sucker!" The man then apparently realizes he's being filmed: "I don't care, bro, videotape me! You're a loser! You're not even from here, you motherfucker!"
While the victim remains silent and continues to film, the man relentlessly continues his rant: "Fucking loser! Fuck you and your family, you terrorist fuck!" He again acknowledges that he's being filmed: "Video all you want, you're an Arab! You're a fucking loser, sand nigger! Exactly, keep filming me, what is that gonna do? What is that gonna do?"
He then brings president-elect Donald Trump into his rant: "Trump is president, asshole, so you can kiss your fucking visa goodbye, scumbag! He'll deport you soon, don't worry, you fucking terrorist!" Then the light apparently changes, and the man starts driving off—while flipping off the camera and still cursing and shouting racist comments at the Uber driver.
Some people commented about how impressed they were with the driver's ability to remain calm. "Amazing that you managed to stay quiet. It actually shows that you are in control of the situation. He was spitting more racial abuse to try get a reaction in which he never got a single word," one user wrote. "Respect to you brother. People like that aren't worth the energy!!"
According to the Washington Post, the man being berated was the Uber driver for Chris Cody, a St. Johns University adjunct professor who speaks Arabic. Cody started talking to the driver, whom he knows only as Mohammed. The driver then explained to Cody, "Right before I picked you up, I had a horrible incident." Mohammed then showed Cody the 40-second video clip of the man's tirade.
Mohammed, who moved to New York City from Morocco about six or seven years ago, ended up next to the man at a stop light on Crescent Street in Astoria. Mohammed didn't tell Cody why he decided to take the video, but Cody could tell the driver was upset and "he was just so shocked by what happened."
Mohammed sent the video to Cody, who shared it on social media, but wanted to remain anonymous and didn't want to report the incident to police. "There’s definitely some Islamophobic and anti-Muslim sentiment out there right now," Cody told the Washington Post. "I don’t blame him for being intimidated, especially with the stuff coming out of that guy’s mouth."
New York State Senator Michael Gianaris (D), who represents the area, denounced the incident on Facebook: "In this community, we pride ourselves on our diversity and tolerance. Hateful rhetoric should not be tolerated in a neighborhood where all races and different beliefs are welcome. More than ever, now is the time to unite and organize. We will stand together against cowardly attacks and show that our values and vision for our country will triumph over hate."
The video shows just one of at least 700 incidents of hateful harassment since Donald Trump, who has a history of Islamophobia, won the election. Even before Trump's presidential victory, hate crimes against Muslims were up 67 percent in 2015.