The U.S. ambassador to Germany has had enough of the racist “jerks” who plague society.
After one of his African-American staffers was harassed at a soccer game in August, ambassador Phillip Murphy wrote a lengthy open letter, simply entitled “Jerks,” where he condemned racism and encouraged his audience to speak up against racism wherever in the world it may occur.
“A jerk is someone who shows no respect for other people, because they dress differently, talk differently, or were born with skin darker or eyes shaped other than the local standard. Ultimately, jerks are people with such a deficit of character and self-respect that they feel a need to belittle and intimidate others to fend off feeling small, scared and insignificant themselves. So we need to help them change the way they think and the way they feel about themselves. But first of all we need to stand up to them. Because words and deeds do have consequences.”
“Racism is still present in America. We still have our jerks, the small people who need to prove themselves by lashing out at people they perceive as different. And so we Americans have to keep working to make things better. The same is true for Germany. Society – whether American or German – cannot look the other way and hope that somehow magically bigotry and racism will disappear. We have to speak out and we have to take action.”
(Photo: Florian Seefried/Getty Images)
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