An Instagram user is being hailed as a hero online for allegedly standing up for a bullied Asian teen in San Francisco.
Clinton Dortch gave an emotional account of the incident via a video posted on his Instagram account, @notoriousmarshmallow.
Speaking to the camera, Dortch shared how an older woman picked on an Asian kid inside an 8R Muni Bus heading to Lands End on Monday afternoon.
“This old black woman decides she wants to start picking on this little Asian kid. I don’t care what race you are. Let me clarify that. I don’t care about your race. I am not that kind of person. It’s the simple fact that you’re picking on this f**** kid. He was standing there. He stood in front of her, standing on the bus and she waved him off, telling him to get away from her.”
He went on to say that while he understood how the old woman might just be acting out of irrational fear, it bothered him how the woman continued to pester the boy after he moved away.
“He’s standing there, minding his own business. He’s quiet. I don’t even know if he knows what she said. He’s so quiet. Because he looked confused and scared. She was rude AF to him. And the entire time, she’s glaring him down. Disgusted. Giving him dirty a** looks. Being mean to him.”
“He’s moving his hands around because he’s nervous. She’s looking at him and whispering to her friend behind her like, disgusted, like, ‘what’s wrong with this kid? What’s wrong with him?’
At that point, Dortch figured that the woman was picking on the kid because of his race since he heard her say something about “Chinatown” to her friend.
“I don’t care about that. It’s the simple fact that you’re picking on a kid. I spoke up when I saw that s***.”
The woman either ignored him or did not hear him tell her off but he noted that her friend seemed to notice and looked scared after that. The woman reportedly continued to give the boy dirty looks up until he stepped off the bus. When the Asian boy got off, the woman blurted out “Thank God.”
Dortch said he snapped when he heard it that he removed his mask and confronted the woman: “What the f**** do you mean thank God? What the f**** does it even mean?”
When she pretended not to hear him, he went on: “What the f**** is wrong with you for bullying a small kid? You look like you’re 35!”
According to Dortch, his reaction appeared to have had an effect on the woman as she just kept quiet after that instead of arguing back.
Dortch, who moved to San Francisco four years ago, tells NextShark that he felt anger watching the boy getting bullied as it reminded him of the awful things that happened to him as a child.
“Thinking about somebody treating a child like that was making me furious,” he shared.
He felt he needed to act because a kid was left alone against two grown adult women.
“We’re supposed to be setting a good example for our children,” he noted. “Not treat them like they’re a freak.”
Dortch’s video has been shared by other social media users and he has since earned praise for his actions.
“It’s great that people appreciate what I did. I’m happy if it motivates people to stand up themselves, but don’t put me on a pedestal. I’m not a hero by any means. I’m a normal guy that goes to work almost everyday and goes to lands end for peace of mind. “
He then urged others to try to understand people, even if they made a similar mistake.
“You have a right to be angry but everyone makes mistakes,” he explained. “In the United States. they want people of color to fight each other. It just distracts from the bigger problems in this country. Pick and choose your battles. Is it really worth fighting over? What’s an internet argument versus one that’s face to face? Just remember the impacts of one versus the other.”
Dortch, who graduated from a three-year residence at Job Corps, currently works as a Line Cook at Palette Teahouse in the Bay Area.