I have come across several photos or images in Warsaw that I have found offensive. I stop and stare and wonder if I am the only person who has seen this and am feeling a little outraged? I see these types of image in restaurants or supermarkets The image above is from the coffee section at a very large French chain of supermarkets in Warsaw. As I went down my favorite aisle ... the coffee aisle ... I saw this smiling Sambo-like picture on a coffee product. There was another can with a dancing, smiling, red-lipped, overweight Black man. Immediately I thought "What the f*#k?!!!!!". I stood there and stared and thought for awhile. Does the person in charge even know how insulting this is to me? Do I find him/her and tell him/her how insulting this is? Would this person even care? Is this just Polish Culture? Is it just true ignorance? In the end, I did nothing ... except buy the coffee. For the record, it is quite good!
As time has passed since this awakening, I have let it go. I do have to choose my battles and I do not have the energy to fight this. I say "fight" because that is what I imagine it would be. Maybe it is insulting only to an American Black man ... I am not sure.
More recently, I went to an American-styled restaurant in a park here. There was an old fashioned advertisement on the wall for some product ... it was a little, smiling Black girl with huge white teeth and ruby-red lips eating a watermelon ... I laughed, thought about buying it ... and welcomed Tyler Perry to Warsaw.