If they kick me with those boots, I would not survive

Author: Martina Hudecková
Location: Brno
This is a story I collected from my mother. It is not a new one, but we remembered it by chance, so I thought it was not a bad idea to write it.
My mother is five feet two inches tall. She is, as they say, in her best age. And she has slightly swarthy skin – like many people in this republic. Hardly anybody can tell she is Romany, but she has to face the same problems as any other Rom.
“I went to see my father in a Brno hospital on a Sunday. He had undergone heart surgery four days earlier and still had not regained consciousness. All our family were very unhappy about it. He had celebrated his 50th birthday only a short time before.
I forgot that it’s dangerous for a Rom to walk in the center of Brno on Fridays and Sundays – and not only dangerous for Roma! These are soccer-match days. From morning on it’s dangerous to go anywhere by train or bus. You hear people shouting:: ‘Gypsies to the gas chambers’ and ‘For the Czechs only’ etc.
The journey to the hospital was quiet up to the railway station. The tram was crowded and I could sort of hide among other people and nobody really noticed my dark skin. At the railway station it started getting hot for me and a Romany couple. About thirty skinheads in shiny Martens boots got on the tram.
I thought to myself: ‘If they kick me with those boots I won’t survive.’
This wasn’t a nice feeling.
In order not to provoke them by looking at them, I turned my eyes to the window and pretended to be interested in what was going on outside. It worked! I rushed out of the tram and waited for the trolley-bus going to my home. I hoped that the noisy skinhead gang would stay outside. They were standing nearby and I was relieved.
Not for long, though. As the trolley-bus arrived, a group of about twenty skinheads boarded it along with me. I should probably have waited for the next one, although it was scheduled for twenty minutes later.
When I wanted to got off at the bus stop near my home, the skinheads surrounded me and blocked the exit. I wanted to use the front exit next to the driver, but they didn’t let me do that either. They pretended not to see me and talked with each other. This was repeated six times until we were at the last stop. Other passengers got off the bus with no difficulty: the skinheads did not obstruct them.
So I was let out at the last stop and walked home listening to offensive remarks.
When I look back at the unpleasant experience that day I feel oppressed. It is not the skinheads I am angry with: I can recognize them from the distance. What is worse is the indifference of other people, the passengers who could not see or hear anything, even though I asked them for help during the ride. There are many stupid people and their indifference can be very harmful.”

No Responses to “If they kick me with those boots, I would not survive”

  1. Not all skinheads are alike. perhaps your hatred for them is no different then their hatred for you. you must understand, your people have made it impossible for many of them to find jobs and support their familys. you must understand this fact, in order to understand their beliefs.

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