Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Confederate Taxi Driver?!

My most disturbing taxi experience in Rio de Janeiro had nothing to do with speed or reckless driving. 

One day my sons and I hailed and hopped into a random cab. Of course he noticed I am a foreigner and started up the normal where are you from conversation. 

Then it took a different turn.  He declared himself a confederate. 

I wondered, did I hear him correctly. The man is obviously of mixed background. Confederate?

Oh I had heard him correctly and to cement his comment, he showed me his confederate flag key chain. The man had taken a trip to the US to tour the confederate south quite a few years before! 

At this point, I´m just thinking "CRAZY!" First off, he´s not American.  Who the hell from another country wants to be a confederate American, especially when there´s no longer a confederacy?  The next part is even worse.

He started raving about the KKK.  He actually turned and looked at my three year old and asked if he could say KKK.  Never been prouder of my son for saying a strong NO.  It´s like he knew the guy was asking him to say something naughty.  Then he proceeded to say that he can´t believe that the United States of America voted in some black guy. 

That pissed me off. The KKK and referring to our president as some black guy.  Not cool.  I had a seriously stupid bigot as my driver!  This dude´s Grandma was probably black. I mean, this guy was not white in the slightest.  And he also wasn´t just "Brazilian."  And that would be the reason I didn´t fully tell him off.  Crazy doesn´t respond well to reason.

I also have a rule not to piss of cab drivers, they have control over the car that my children and I are in for heaven´s sake, but I couldn´t let it slide.  You can´t not say something again racism.

But I couldn´t just it go.  I told him that I highly support Obama and that it was the white guy before him who fucked everything up. 

Then I started in on his beloved KKK and told him that they don´t even exist anymore. He was shocked and said he thought they were still going strong.  I told him no, that maybe there were small branches of guys who sat around together wearing the white dresses.  Then again, I don´t know if you could call that KKK or something else.  I also informed him that the people of the US are getting smarter (mmmm, I fibbed a bit there) and don´t support that kind of attitude anymore. (fingers crossed!)

I mean, seriously people, the KKK would sooner burn a cross in the dude´s front yard then bake the man welcome to the club cookies.  What in the hell is he thinking?

I continued by telling him the good Obama is doing with public health care and making it easier for people to get a college education.   I told him how the south is poor now and not thriving what-so-ever. I even told him that the women have gotten fatter.

I told him he could pull over because we were at our stop.  We weren´t but I was done. He gave me his card and we got out.  I walked with my boys around the corner, threw the card away, and got into another cab.  That was enough crazy for one day.


  1. Whoa! Someone in the south here.. WTH? Normally it's annoying to hear the stereotypes that we're all dumb, poor, and toothless down here.. but if it stops racism..
    Here we even break into a fit of giggles when we see confederate flags and try to take bets on if the owner of said flag has a mullet and is a huge skynrd fan.

  2. You always have such funny experiences! You got me to thinking about that city in Sao Paulo called Americana that was settled largely by Confedrate "refugees" following the civil war. I doubt this guy has a connection to that but at least it would explain his allegiance to the Confederacy here in Brasil (though not in this day and age!). I also imagined a mullet! Right on for defending our man Obama. You know what also gets me about taxi drivers here in Brasil and a lot of male drivers here in general as well ?, they blame a lot of the bad driving on women...seriously and they never check to verify it, "oh bad driver, must be a stupid woman" and they say it freely without even thinking that maybe SOME women might get offended, and they say worse things as well. I would never be offended by a "stupid driver" comment, something non gender or race specific. I get fumed because in my opinion the WORST and most dangerous drivers here in Rio (handsdown) are the careless bus drivers and they're all men (the same with taxi drivers). This thing happens several times a year and I just say in English, "hey, you're an idiot caveman"...and they have no idea what I said, but I feel better at least. I know it's juvenile but one needs to vent. But I'd say the same to some a-hole in English in the US if he made such rude and general comments, to a female customer no less.

  3. What do you mean the KKK don't exist anymore? What about the NRA?

    I laughed when you said that the people of the US were getting smarter. XD

    Brazilians can't drive. (at least, the ones I know)

  4. The US would go under before the NRA ;)