Dash the Curry

indian-spice.jpgHitting the interwebs and twitterverse today is a story out of Wales that makes you scream, ‘that’s racist!” It’s the story of a teacher who thinks she can aerosol the Brown away.

Elizabeth Davies, 48, was accused of “humiliating” children aged between three and six by using the aerosol spray on them on nursery class. Mrs Davies, a nursery schoolteacher for 20 years, taught at a inner-city school where more than half of her pupils were Bangladeshi.

The hearing was told she accused Bangladeshi children of smelling of onions or curry – and would say “there is a waft coming in from paradise” before blasting the air freshener. [telegraph]

I’m show you wafts of paradise, Mrs. Davies. You should know better than to be OCD about aromas if you are going to be a school teacher of preschoolers!

Mrs Davies is also accused of spraying other children who broke wind, washing their hands with pine disinfectant and making them stand on newspaper for accidentally wetting themselves.

Mother-of-two Mrs Islam said the spray was “usually” for children who had English has an additional language. [telegraph]

This case is just abhorrent. It’s difficult enough going to school as a pre-schooler. Do you remember it? Being four years old, having to say good-bye to your mother at the classroom door, walking into a room full of strange kids, and having to make new friends? Remember navigating which language to use or why your skin was browner than the others? Really though, it was simply about wanting to belong. What Mrs. Davies was simply uncalled for, and what she did could only be called racist.

Thank goodness she was fired after a parent complained. May her next job be a waitress at an Indian restaurant.

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About Taz

Taz is an activist, organizer and writer based in California. She is the founder of South Asian American Voting Youth (SAAVY), curates MutinousMindState.tumblr.com and blogs at TazzyStar.blogspot.com. Follow her at twitter.com/tazzystar

6 thoughts on “Dash the Curry

  1. Forgive me but this story made me laugh…not because the lady comes off as a racist but because she sounds like a nut. Febreezing after children because they break wind? I wish I could get away with doing that in the metro or at work, where only everyone breaks wind. In any case, I think we tend to throw around the word racist like it’s a ball of some sort for any situation involving mistreatment of a visible minority. I mean in this case, it’s not like Mrs. Davies was solely targeting brown kids. Also, please don’t tell me you’ve never been repulsed by the smell of cooking, not just curry, in other people before? I know we can’t really lump in the smell of food in clothing with other hygienic practices, but if you think about it, one of the main reasons we put a conscious effort in maintaining our hygiene is for socialization purposes, out of respect for other people so we don’t drive them away from us. I work in a pretty diverse residential area where people will literally come in with their pyjamas on and will sometimes reek of strong cooking, not to mention serious B.O to the extent where I sometimes have to head out for fresh air to alleviate the nausea (no joke, it’s that bad sometimes). The cooking odor may be excused if you’re coming in to do some quick banking, but what if you were in a professional environment, in a meeting, trying to make an impression on some high execs and you had the rancid smell of shutki (a strong smelling dried fish bengali ppl eat) lingering on your suit? Yes, we are dealing with small children…whose parents’ responsibility it is to make sure they teach them how to avoid negative attention by following simple rules of “propriety” when interacting with society. Ms Davies may be a real uptight germaphobia afflicted biatch, but I think the only difference between her and others who might, and probably will, judge these kids is that she’s vocalized her judgment and bias (which doesn’t excuse it of course) whereas others might not but that won’t prevent them from making a judgment.

  2. yah it sucks to be fired. I knowz :( but why a second chance by an injun restaurant only? Vy not bangla…lets be diverse & accommodating ;)

  3. I think indian restaurants in all diasporic communities have been colonized by bangla ppl. Too bad there’s no authentic bangla restaurant in sight, not where i live anyway.

  4. <

    blockquote>May her next job be a waitress at an Indian restaurant.

    That’s too kind. May she be a dishwasher at an Indian Restaurant. She doesn’t deserve to leave the kitchen.

    What a slag. That sort of reminds me of my (RACIST) 2nd grade teacher who tried to place every non-white kid in class in speech therapy regardless of their language ability/accent (or lack thereof).