Coming back from Philippines to China, and just passed the border into hong kong and its always a sight….its kinda sad, but i don’t get in the line where there are africans or middle eastern….because almost definitely they are going to take longer to process…and almost 75% of the time have to be interrogated by border patrol supervisors, being my first situation to cover.
And coming to Hong Kong from the philippines, i always overhear the conversations from the border inspectors to the filipina woman, as this one below from tonight:
Hong Kong Inspector: “how long are you staying in Hong Kong?”
Filipina Woman: 2 weeks, sir
Hong Kong Inspector: Why are u coming to hong kong, no jobs in the philippines!??
Filipina Woman: No, to visit my sister
Hong Kong Inspector: You sure your not going here to find a job, to be a nanny
Filipina Woman: No sir, i miss my sister and i came to visit her
Hong Kong Inspector: Oh, so you can afford to take a personal vacation to hong kong!
That was all i was able to get before i stepped up in my line.
I almost feel guilty, showing my american passport while there’s an african businessman getting pulled into an interview office to be asked additional questions, or provide additional paperwork.
All because of where we are born, where we grew up…..which none of us have any control over at all….
And the other side of racism in international business…..seeing orders to various “high risk” countries. Second example is having your IP (computer location) matters when surfing on the internet, and banks and businesses flag certain customers or visitors interacting with the website – sometimes putting certain alrts, flags, or restrictions on the website.
As you have seen me complain so many times about Bank of America and paypal (everyone overseas HATES paypal overseas, they are constantly blocking payments, receiving money) are always monitoring the security of their systems and flags always go off with IPs changing for multiple logins.
And the third situation is the freelancer networks…if you hire a worker online, you can filter your results by location/country of applicants. some of my other business friends make jokes about the generalizations of certain cultures of people. Like in India…..they seem to push for money more urgently, faster in the cycle. And more frequently then others – which annoys the buyer of that service.
Sure, businesses and countries are just trying to protect themselves from terrorism, their domestic labor market, their client’s financial security. But in a way…its profiling different cultures and different races. But how else, that is the question.
Having been outside of USA 3 years now makes me less centralized on American business, and I remember myself and those I dealt with only thinking DOMESTIC, USA to USA business….not realizing there’s a big, big world out there. Being aware of these situations makes us better in business decisions, as well as life.