Nothing says America 2019 like some good, old fashioned racism on the Fourth of July.
Unfortunately the above statement is not a joke, especially for Wesly Michel of San Francisco, California.
Michel is a black software engineer who was waiting outside of a San Francisco apartment complex for a friend on the 4th. While he waited, a man later identified as Christopher Cukor, a YouTube executive, accused Michel of trespassing and proceeded to call the cops in front of his young son.
Michel filmed Cukor and his son and posted the result to Facebook.
At the time of this article’s writing, the video has had over 1.5 million views on its original post with nearly 35,000 shares.
During the video, Cukor can be heard demanding that Michel call his friend down to meet him.
Michel responds to Cukor by saying:
“They don’t need to do that, you can just walk away.”
As Cukor pulled out his phone to call the police, his son can be heard saying:
“Daddy, don’t, don’t.”
The little boy continued to beg his dad to drop this issue.
“Daddy, go. It’s the better, I agree with him, Daddy. It’s the better. I don’t like this. Let’s go.”
Michel encourages Cukor to:
“listen to [his] son”.
Throughout the video, Michel urges Cukor to be sensible, all the while filming him and warning him that he would be:
“…the next person on TV”
Wesly even gives Christopher the opportunity to take back his offensive behavior in exchange for deleting the video that has now gone viral, but the YouTube employee refused.
Finally Wesly’s friend arrived on the scene and Cukor can be seen turning bright red before reprimanding Michel for cursing in front of his son.
The internet is outraged at Cukor’s blatant racism, and even more affronted by his willingness to behave in such a manner in front of his young son.
He is an unfortunate madman.— Eduardo Torres (@eduardouhtred) July 9, 2019
To state the obvious:— Sir Richard Pumpaloaf (@DickPumpaloaf) July 9, 2019
If you call the police on a person solely based on his/her skin color, you have a serious f’ing problem & you deserve the ridicule/embarrassment.#BLM
White man calls police on black man waiting for his friend in apartment lobby https://t.co/XbOJI6UKop
Doesn’t matter if #wesleymichel is a software engineer. Dude could have been a garbage man. #ChristopherCukor is just a racist techbro. How about minding your business and stop embarrassing your kid, you elitist prick. Now, YOUR son has to bear the weight of your stupidity.— 宝啟明 (@PaulWilson805) July 9, 2019
Others are taking some solace in the fact that the little boy knew that his father’s actions were wrong.
Morning from the UK @chriscukor The world’s now seeing the video of you harassing Wesley Michel whilst waiting for his friend. The video made me sad, but there was also joy that your son has a moral compass and won’t be growing up to be a bigot like you #ChristopherCukor— Lee Mallinson (@coachmally) July 9, 2019
Imagine a black guy demanding to know from a white guy what the name of the person is he’s waiting for?? This is a disgusting display and his kid even knows it😡— MzMalarkey🔥 (@ScottKimbal18) July 8, 2019
How comes his kid is more of an adult than he is to comprehend what he is doing is wrong?— nicht (@therealgakio) July 8, 2019
The fact that his little boy was crying and begging for him to stop, because he “believes the man” is what’s really heart breaking. The kid knew his dad was in the wrong, and he continued right in front of him— 𝕭ã𝖑𝖑𝖉𝖎ñ𝖍𝖔 ™ 🇧🇲 (@Balldinho) July 9, 2019
Cukor, the YouTube exec who called the police despite his own son’s objections, has since deleted all his social media accounts.
The best-selling book White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism is available here.
“In this ‘vital, necessary, and beautiful book’, antiracist educator Robin DiAngelo deftly illuminates the phenomenon of white fragility and ‘allows us to understand racism as a practice not restricted to bad people’.”
“Referring to the defensive moves that white people make when challenged racially, white fragility is characterized by emotions such as anger, fear, and guilt, and by behaviors including argumentation and silence. These behaviors, in turn, function to reinstate white racial equilibrium and prevent any meaningful cross-racial dialogue.”
“In this in-depth exploration, DiAngelo examines how white fragility develops, how it protects racial inequality, and what we can do to engage more constructively.”