“Racism still exists and it’s very serious and it’s right in your neighborhood” – Mikea Eberhart
Mikea Eberhart never thought she would be harassed by racists just a few blocks from her home.
Until this week.
Eberhart, who is nine months pregnant, said she was walking in her Dearborn Heights, Michigan neighborhood to try to induce labor. She was walking with her 12-year-old son and 13-year-old daughter when a woman started shouting the N-word and other racial epithets — and then threatened to shoot Eberhart.
“I was walking up the street… me and my two kids… a truck pulls up and says n**ger n**ger n**ger,” Eberhart told Fox 2 New in Detroit.
You can see the video HERE.
“She proceeded to say, ‘Get out of here, Detroit is that way, N-word, B,’ and then she said, ‘I’m going to shoot you,'” Eberhart said. “You see, I’m clearly pregnant. I’ve got my kids, and you’re threatening to shoot me and my kids? Is it that serious?”
So it’s come to this: A pregnant black woman and her kids can’t even walk through their own neighborhood without being threatened by bigots? This is a shameful act of racism – and cowardice.
Eberhart, a nurse, moved to Dearborn Heights three years ago, a community that is 86% white and 8% African-American, according to the 2010 Census.
“When she said she was going to shoot us, I was scared for my mom,” Eberhart’s daughter said. “She had her purse like, I thought she was going to pull something out.”
“I was scared,” she added. “I didn’t know people still look at us like that.”
Unfortunately, these types of racial incidents are becoming much more prevalent.
According to The Southern Poverty Law Center there are 917 hate groups in the United States, nine in the Detroit area. And the Bureau of Justice Statistics reported that Americans experienced 250,000 hate crimes in 2015.
President Donald Trump has exacerbated racial tensions in America with his racially incendiary rhetoric. In August, following a deadly white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, Trump appeared to side with Neo-Nazis saying there are “fine people” in the bigoted group. Racists like David Duke, the former head of the Ku Klux Klan, openly supports Trump.
Trump’s legions of supporters, some of whom have made offensive remarks about African-Americans, continue to divide the nation along racial lines.
A recent NPR/PBS/Maris Poll asked if race relations are better today than last year before Trump was elected president: 54% said it’s worse, 33% said it’s the same; and 9% said race relations are better.
Meanwhile, we can add Eberhart’s harassment to the growing number of hate cases in America.
“I didn’t work hard to get here for someone to determine whether I can walk up the street or not,” Eberhart said. “That’s not going to happen.”
Police are investigating the incident. Eberhart said she videotaped the encounter. She posted the video on Facebook but removed it after receiving racist comments attacking her further. Eberhart said she wants the woman who harassed her to be held accountable.
“I want her prosecuted… I’m going to press charges… I want her in jail,” Eberhart told reporters. “You threatened my kids. I don’t play about my kids.”
“Racism still exists and it’s very serious and it’s right in your neighborhood,” Eberhart told reporters. “It’s very diverse here now… for her to make that scene… it was surprising to me… because I never encountered something like that.”
Let’s hope it doesn’t happen again.
What do you think?
Share your email below to receive our daily newsletter!