Peter Varga's brainchild Humans of Dublin is just getting better and better by the day –highlighting the best, worst and downright terrible parts of Irish life.
This week's instalment features a half-Irish, half-Egyptian woman, relaying her tales of growing up in Ireland.
'Half-cast' is still a term that makes my blood turn cold. A small incident that occurred when I was a shy 10-year-old stayed with me for much longer than it should have. The person who described me using that is actually now a good friend, but I've never brought it up because I know it wasn't what she really thought of me, but rather how society had taught her to label me. It didn't stop it hurting at the time though. I remember the feelings of pure hurt and frustration. One little word. I'm half Irish and half Egyptian, but I'm as Irish as they come. I love tea, I can pull a decent pint of Guinness, my family grow potatoes and my answer for just about everything is 'Ah sure it'll be grand.' Yet despite this, I without a doubt experienced mild forms of racism growing up. Nothing major, just small comments like the one I mentioned earlier, and being made feel just a little bit different. My primary school days made me develop skin as tough as old leather and for that much, I'm thankful. I'm very patriotic, and I love Ireland, but I find that some Irish people tend to be of the opinion that we're somehow a superior race of some kind. A friend once said to me, and I find this particularly amusing, that she just 'couldn't go out with a guy who isn't Irish.' And she couldn't even say why. Talk about thinking highly of yourselves! People don't realise that statements like these sound ugly, arrogant and well, downright stupid.
While we've come pretty far, it's quite clear that we've much, much further to go.