It’s Friday afternoon and almost the weekend, which is a great thing because President Donald Trump is heading to his New Jersey golf club, which presumably means he’s not working and therefore might not further fuck up our country in the next 48 hours. We’d like to leave it at that and coast blissfully into Saturday with blinders on, but this little piece of grotesque behavior needs to be exposed in all its nastiness, because a 9-year-old girl out there needs to know that this kind of harassment is not normal, or OK.
Paula Nuguid, a mother of three who lives in the South Bay, posted a video on Facebook Thursday that depicted a threatening verbal assault she experienced while biking with her daughter through Sunnyvale. Her 9-year-old daughter, caught briefly in the beginning of the video, is wearing a yellow safety vest and a helmet, and appears to be riding on an attachment to her mom’s bike.
“This happened to me today at 4:33 p.m. as I was traveling south on Frances St in the downtown area of Sunnyvale, California, which is part of Silicon Valley,” Nuguid wrote on Facebook. “I was trying to make a legal left into a parking lot where Frances St and Olsen St intersect. I was traveling east in the bike lane on Evelyn Ave and the light was green as I turned right. I was signaling left and waiting for oncoming traffic to pass when this man began incessantly honking at me, calling me a bitch, and telling me to get out of his way. I was attempting to make a left the way the California DMV recommends. This white guy thought it would be okay to honk at me and repeatedly call me a bitch as I was making a legal left turn. When I confronted him about using his two-ton vehicle to intimidate my 9-year-old daughter and me, he called me a Cambodian n-word.”
“I hope his friends, family, and employer see this,” she adds.
For the record, Nuguid’s Facebook page states she is from Manila, not Cambodia.
Critics of Nuguid’s actions have attacked her on Facebook, with some saying that her rage spurred the driver into his verbal assault. But as any cyclist knows, picking a fight with someone in a car is always an uncomfortable imbalance of power. While she certainly sounds pissed off, she may also have been scared. Biking with kids through traffic can be a terrifying affair, and Nuguid told Raw Story that this is not the first time she has been racially harassed by white men while riding her bike.
Nuguid says that she and her daughter both cried after the encounter, and had a talk about the racism that her children may encounter based on the color of their skin.
In the meantime, we can only hope that this video will get back to the assailant’s friends, family, and employer.