Most people would like to differ but being a black man in Turkey on holiday is no fun. The treatment one receives is distasteful to say the list and i wonder how they expect to join the EU.
I must quickly add that this is in no way calling out all European Spots because i always have a fabulous time in UK & France.
Coming from Nigeria where we only watch racism in the movies, it was terrible being shoo-ed away and refused service in different stalls at a market in 2008. We went as a group on a field trip from my post-grad school to Turkey. The whites in the group were attended to!
It was my first experience and whether it would affect how i deal with Turks from now on would obviously be based on my next encounter with them.
James (Ansbach): How very superior you seem when you say "way too many people on this forum" are ignorant of what has and does go on in Europe. You very often seem to strike a sour note in your comments. Perhaps you are unhappy in Germany. Assuming that "many people on this forum" do not keep up with international news, do not read foreign journals & newspapers, do not have family & friends who live abroad, do not know European history, is pretty bloody insulting, frankly.
Beredugu, did everyone in Turkey treat you the same way or was it only some people some of the time? Certainly you must have met people who were friendly towards you, or am I mistaken? There are racists in every country but there are also plenty of people who do not feel that way towards "foreigners". Also, I can't help but wonder why it took you 2 years to post this, and why now?
Does it make a difference when Mr. Beredugu decides to post his message?
Prior to my tour in Vietnam, I spent a brief rotation at the U.S. Embassy in Ankara and spent time at the Palazzo Corpi Consulate General offices in Istanbul. Two of my fellow Marines were African-American and their off-duty (civilian clothes) treatment by the local population was quite poor. In their remaining time, they chose to wear their uniform in public. They were never treated poorly when in uniform. I was hoping things had changed and gotten better. I routinely watch European Journal on PBS and saw a piece on Turkish racism and intolerace (primarily towards Africans and Christians) a few months back. I was very disappointed by what I saw.
I was in Egypt with a group, and the one black man who was with us felt sometimes irritated by his treatment. Stuff like shopkeepers calling out loudly, "Hey brother!" and some little boys running after them.
Egyptians come in all colors, so I think it was the fact that he was both a westerner and black. Another year there was a bunch of black women in our group, other than the fact that many assumed they were Egyptian, they did not report any mistreatment. But they were always laughing and joking, which Egyptians love.
I was talking about it to my roommate, and she said that when she went to school in Lebanon, it was very obvious that there was racism there. No one ever talked about it, but none of the top jobs were going to dark-skinned people.
I would think that it is probably likely that most Caucasian people would not be able to grasp what racism is like, myself included.
James .. You do have a great point there, i was on a tour there with my mates in Developmental Finance and it was in the market place that the experience occurred. But of course after that i was just put off really for the remaining week. My mates were all embarrassed too which i think made it worse.
On why it took me so long? when i came across this site and the cool spots reviews, i wanted to find out if anyone had seen or experienced this before. I am still curious and I don't meet Turks in my daily life.