I just came from a short trip in Vietiane, Laos and had a terrible experience with RACISM at the hotel I stayed. I stayed at the Aroon Residence Hotel, Ban Hatsady Nue, Chantabouly District. When I was checking out I asked the manager how much was the equivalent of the 39 US fee in Laos Kip. He became angry when I told him that the rate he quoted was more than the going rate.
He told me to pay and get out with my BLACK SKIN. It was really violating. Be careful of that hotel if you are black.
#1 blackskin has been a member since 18/8/2008. Posts: 10
Maybe you did have a bad experience there, however I know the owners of that hotel and they are ok people. I wonder whether you were aggressive and insulting first? Mind you, that does not excuse the comment.
Rufus if by asking that he give me the going rate for the US dollar to Kip rate I was rude, then that is sad and means that a hotel that offers a service is free to breach their customer's human rights. As I said such a comment should not be uttered especially by the MANAGER. For all I know all people who live in Laos feel this way so I really don't care what you say cause your point is clearly biased.
#3 blackskin has been a member since 18/8/2008. Posts: 10
i think Rufus had a fair question, particularly since he knows the owners of this hotel.
i'm sorry that you had a bad experience at this hotel, but from my own travels in asia i've learned that sometimes i've offended people unintentionally too. asian culture is rich and subtle and it is easy for a westerner, even an experienced traveller, to make a mistake.
Rufus very clearly agreed with you that whatever may have happened did NOT excuse the racist comment. because of that, i'm not sure why you reacted to his comments so strongly.
we see so many first-time posters like you on this message board who had a bad experience for whatever reason and are trying to get even. in most cases we never hear from them again.
Rufus wasn't biased with his comment. perhaps the really sad part is that by saying that for all you know all people who live in Laos feel this way, you have, on a smaller scale, participated in exactly the same type of racism you suffered. best wishes.
I don't know why this is, but the good folks of Thailand and Laos (not sure about Burma, Vietnam, Cambodia or Malaysia) refer to most foreigners as falang (or farang or however you want to spell it), but they also, at times, distinguish between some of us. I emphasize "some."
For example, the French are referred to as Kun Falancay. The Chinese as Kun Jin. The Germans as Kun Germanee. Japanese as Kun Yipon. BUT, and this is the big BUT, I have never in all my time over there heard anyone I know EVER refer to someone with black skin as anything but Kun Dum (black person.) There is no attempt whatsoever, ever, to distinguish them in any other way.
This could very well be deemed racism by some, and just the way it is with no harm intended by others.
I'll argue upside down and sideways that racism is not a universally understood concept, just like corruption.
So much offence can be taken by linguistic ambiguities and cultural unfamiliarity. It may, or may not, be the case with the 'blackskin' comment.
Tilapia's comments reminded me of a friend who had spent some time in the Sudan and knew a few basic Arabic words. He complained that he had overheard locals referring to his wife as 'white meat'. He took this to be extremely offensive (which it would be in English). However, the Arabic word for both 'meat' and 'skin' is the same. If he had had a larger command of the language he could have interpreted the comment as being 'white skin', and would not have been offended.
#6 agarlao has been a member since 13/6/2008. Posts: 30
The Laotians generaly don't use the honorific kun before words but rather the qualifier kone, meaning person. I think they don't generaly call black people kone Nigeria or kone South Africa because they don't know the whereabouts of various countries. Likewise they call all South Asians and Middle Easterners, kone kahk. In any case I'd consider all the terms to be nuetral, falang, kone dam, kone kahk. If they want to cuss there certainly are other slang words regarding race, they are devided further male and female, I'm certainly not going to repeat them here. They are probably not usefull words to learn in any language.
As to wether Lao people are racist or not, I'd generalise and say no. You also have to work pretty hard to get them angry.
ha ha now you all feel offended. well multiple how you feel by a thousand and that's how I felt. I visited Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Singapore and Malaysia in the weeks before and Laos was last on my list. Nice to see the eloquence here. I wonder how I found no one except the people at the hotel who spoke understandable English. TO BE CLEAR THE MANAGER OF THE HOTEL SAID IN ENGLISH "PAY ME AND LEAVE WITH YOUR BLACK SKIN"
I ASKED IF HE WAS WHITE AND HE PROCEEDED TO TELL ME YES.
I WAS WITH MY JAPANESE FRIEND AND WHEN WE ARRIVED HE WALKED PASSED ME- I WAS INFRONT- AND WENT AND TAKE HER BAG. I WAS THE ONE WHO RESERVED THE HOTEL.
IT'S INTERESTING TO SEE YOU ALL DEFENDING YOURSELVES. ONLY GUILTY PEOPLE DO THIS. HA HA. I PITY YOU ALL. KEEP RESPONDING YOU ARE PROVIDING GREAT COMIC RELIEF. KEEP IT COMING.
#9 blackskin has been a member since 18/8/2008. Posts: 10
I assume you are male? Is it not natural then that he would take your female friend's bag rather than yours? I also see from your comment, "I wonder how I found no one except the people at the hotel who spoke understandable English", that you clearly suffer from bias. You even abused me when I asked a straightforward question. I think you have anger issues.
ha.... ha.... ha ha, ha RUFUS I am ALL WOMAN.Thanks for your diagnosis. But since you are clearly omnipotent, you will already know all the answers to the question you pose. keep on putting ur foot into ur mouth. as i said before YOU R MY COMIC RELIEF... HA.... HA... HA
take ur head out of ur ass mate
#11 blackskin has been a member since 18/8/2008. Posts: 10
As I said, "anger management issues". Get help. The staff at the Aroon Residence confirmed this today wahn i popped apst on the way to work. They said you were very aggressive and rude. As I said in my original post, this does not excuse the comment in any way, but at least it explains it.
THANK YOU RUFUS FOR GOING BY THE HOTEL AND CORROBORATING WHAT THE STAFF AT THE AROON RESIDENCE HOTEL TOLD ME. THANK YOU SOO.... MUCH. NOW YOU HAVE HELPED TO SHOW JUST HOW UNPROFESSIONAL THEY ARE. AND IF I HAD ANGER ISSUES THE MANAGER WOULD HAVE NEEDED FACIAL SURGERY. BUT SINCE I AM A FOREIGNER AND UR ARE ALL THE SAME PEOPLE AND IN UR OMNIPRESENCE U WERE THERE, TAKE THEIR WORD FOR IT. GO ON TELL ME MORE KEEP THE COMIC RELIEF COMING OH THE SMALL MINDED ONE. AND OH I DONT NEED TO LOSE MY TEMPER WHEN I CAN WIELD WORDS. REMEMBER THEN PEN IS MIGHTER THAN THE SWORD. LOOKING FORWARD TO UR RESPONSE. REALLY ENJOYING THE BANTER. PLEASE BE QUICK ABOUT UR COME BACK AND AGAIN TRY NOT TO PUT UR FOOT IN IT. HA... HA...HAAAA...
#13 blackskin has been a member since 18/8/2008. Posts: 10
Hmm caps now. You do seem a bit loud.
Blackskin, if you showed the same aggressive attitude at the GH I'm not surprised you got treated badly. Shouting and making a scene is never a good way to resolve a dispute in SE Asia.
Try smiling and a more relaxed attitude next time. Be less aware of your skin colour ...yes they notice it, so what. Asians also openly discriminate in terms of physical appearance and age when it comes to getting a job for example. What is PC in your country does not apply elsewhere.
If you can't deal with it then go somewhere where people don't get unfairly discriminated against for one reason or another. (Offhand I can't think of anywhere in the world right now mind you).
well, we could either take their word for it or take your word for it. given your aggressive attitude and that you've shouted at us twice now and called us names, it is easy to believe that there is another side to this story.
Rufus was right that there is no excuse for the racist comment. but Rufus and others have gently tried to help you better understand how this may have happened and what you can do to avoid this situation in the future. life happens. learn from this and move on. you don't have to let someone else's bad behavior ruin your day and everyone else's too. cheers.
THANK YOU MANY VARIOUS PSYCHOLOGISTS KEEP THE ADVICE COMING.HA... HA... HA... HA
HAVEN'T HAD THIS MUCH FUN IN A LONG TIME. BYE GUYS. I HAVE PROVEN MY POINT. THANKS FOR YOUR HELP. I'M OUT
#18 blackskin has been a member since 18/8/2008. Posts: 10
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