Victim of ugly racial attack has the most beautiful response
WHEN two men racially vilified Toowoomba Mountaineer Paul Aleer, they soon realised they weren't getting away with it.
Standing at nearly seven-foot tall, his height would be enough to intimidate any attacker. Instead it was the 23-year-old's eloquent response that had the men lost for words.
Paul Aleer was publicly abused by two men on Friday at Toowoomba Plaza.
"You don't belong here, go back to your country," one man said to him.
Mr Aleer first ignored the comment.
The other man then continued with a tirade of racial abuse.
He called Mr Aleer a "scrub" and said: "this isn't your country, go back you black ****".
However, it was Mr Aleer who had the last say when he showed off his fluent English and informed the men he was a citizen who was educated here and was currently studying at university.
"I knew if I had retaliated it would have given them a reason to look at me in that light," he said.
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"I don't think either of them thought I could speak a word of English but I've been here for 14 years, I almost speak it better than my native."
When Mr Aleer got home, he shared the experience to his friends on Facebook but didn't realise it was a public post. The status went viral and now sits at nearly 900 likes and 80 shares.
"In my decade and a half of living here I've never experienced racism," he said.
"There's no way in hell I'm going to judge a minority that think like that; they were individuals and that was their opinion.
"It just caught me off guard so I guess I wanted to raise awareness that it can happen to anyone."
Mr Aleer is studying social science and anthropology at USQ.
The Sudanese national was born in a Kenyan refugee camp and came to Toowoomba when he was nine.
He wanted to thank a woman in the car park that day who walked up to him and told him he was welcomed.
"That's the Australia I know and love," he said.