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Racist Clerk Makes 10-Year-Old Boy Cry - When His Father Finds Out, He Decides to Confront Him
Father Confronts Clerk After Using a Racial Slur Against His 10-Year-Old Son
Uplifting News

Racist Clerk Makes 10-Year-Old Boy Cry - When His Father Finds Out, He Decides to Confront Him

One angry mans reaction to an unexpected incident goes viral.

Acceptance and inclusiveness are two traits that most of us hope any community would encourage and endorse. But that doesn’t mean prejudice and ignorance don’t still exist.

Unfortunately, one family faced both of those things during an outing one summer, but now they’re speaking out about it to remind all of us why we should always lead with love.

An Unexpected Incident

an angry man

In July 2022, a North Texas family was visiting a Dillard’s department store to escape the heat and spend a little time together shopping for new threads. But when the family’s 10-year-old son approached an older white clerk to ask where the changerooms were, the man hurled a racial slur at the kid instead.

The boy’s father, Muhammad Karim, didn’t witness the exchange (although several others did), but when he saw his son in tears, he was angry. “A tear came out my baby’s eye, and he said, ‘Dad, you didn’t hear what that man just called me?’” he recalled to CBS News.

After speaking to his son and with several other people who had overheard what happened, Karim decided to approach the clerk in a calm and collected manner.

Keeping His Cool

Although Karim was really angry, he managed to keep his cool. “You shouldn't do that. You're too old... I carry myself with honor. I would never disrespect any human being by calling them outside of their name,” he told the clerk in the exchange, which was recorded by one of Karim’s cousins and later uploaded to Instagram. “You don't know the impact of what you've done on my son. But maybe you were unaware.”

The man nodded and explained that he had hit his leg, which resulted in him using the slur. But Karim didn’t buy that.

“You don't go from hitting your foot to [that],” he said. “Life doesn’t work that way. This is repetitive behavior.”

Later, Karim explained to CBS News that he was working hard to control his anger at that moment. “The Prophet Muhammad says, ‘Don't be angry. Don't be angry. Don't be angry.’ I'll be honest with you. I was angry. I was livid.”

Lasting Effects

Karim also explained how the employee, whose first name is Homer, didn’t understand the impact of his words. “My [son] is scared to come outside. He thinks that every white person is out to get him. How do you explain it?” he said.

Later, after Dillard’s was reached for comment, the store provided a statement to CBS News. “The allegations made against our former employee were promptly investigated, found to be in clear violation of our standards, and his employment with Dillard's was immediately terminated,” it wrote.

As for Karim, he’s glad he was able to remain calm in that situation because now others can learn from the incident as well. “I can't allow for my emotions to overshadow [my family] in this particular time,” he said. “So, I'm doing the best that I can to protect them… The best decision at that moment was to do what was right.”

Leading by Example

When someone wrongs you or a loved one, it can be hard to maintain composure. But Karim’s story reached so many people because he was able to control his emotions and lead by example, proving that you don’t always need to meet hate with anger to be effective.

It’s unfortunate that a 10-year-old boy was traumatized by this experience, but hopefully, others will see how this clerk’s cruel words affected not just a child but his entire family and community. It’s a reminder that it’s always best to lead with love, compassion, and understanding, no matter what.

So the next time you face an injustice, see if you’re able to turn the situation around into a teachable moment, just as Karim did. And if you see an injustice happening, don’t be afraid to speak up.

At the end of the day, we’re all humans just struggling to do our best, but by sharing these types of stories, hopefully we can educate and inspire change rather than tolerate prejudice.

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