Last week a Portland woman’s racist comments went viral. Selina Cairel posted a video to her Facebook of a woman yelling racist remarks to her.
Commenters quickly identified the woman in the video as Sierra Dawn Measelle. Over the weekend, Measelle’s life flipped upside down as people harassed her employer, posted her addressed, and her criminal record. Measelles took to Instagram this weekend to apologize for her comments.
The exchange between Cairel and Measelle took less than 90 seconds in total. Cairel had made a stop at a local donut shop to purchase donuts. After returning to her car, Measelle pulled in and began yelling at her. Selina’s Facebook post outlined what happened next.
“It started when she had said in the most demeaning Poor excuse of a supposed “Asian” accent that “She’s Asian, she can’t see that’s why she can’t drive.” I was parked next to her, and I did not instigate this at all. She was the one to pull out her phone first saying “ this should go on Instagram” and started recording me.
She went on to say, ” I never let this pass and wanna make sure this kind of behavior is seen and how people of color encounter this all the time. I wanna make sure she gets seen, and her racist, ignorant behavior is exposed.”
In the video, the woman says to Selina, “Before you say anything you might want to make sure you’re actually legals, and then I’mma call the cops and let them know.”
Selina asks the woman for clarification, and she responds, “That you’re illegals crossing the border and your parents probably had to work for f’ing dirt just to get here.”
On Sunday a local news channel sat down with Selina to discuss the incident. Selina told KATU that the exchange is still playing in her mind.
She told the reporter, “It’s awful. You know? At the time I was like, ‘Is this real life? Is this happening to me?’ Those words are very hurtful. I don’t stand by it. I have never been talked to like that in my whole entire life, ever. That’s disrespectful; it was rude.”
The reporter shared with her about the threats Measelle received due to the video. Selina apologized to Measelle for the threats she’s received since the video went viral. “That’s terrible. That’s something I really didn’t want to happen, especially to her. I apologize for people threatening your life and families and everything. I hope she’s okay.”
In her message, she stated, “I’d like to again offer my sincere apology to Ms. Cairel, and I am sorry for the ignorant, hateful comments I made to her and her friend.”
She continued by saying, “I’m ashamed that I let my emotions get the best of me and I reacted in such a hurtful manner that goes completely against my beliefs and morals. I’m extremely disappointed in myself and my lack of empathy.”
Measelle hopes to use this as a learning experience, and asked others who use racist language to learn from her mistakes.
Despite rumblings on social media about the two women being intoxicated, they both assert they had not been drinking.
Cairel told KATU that she hopes she can forgive Measelle for her comments one day.
As the dust settles on the unfortunate event, both women are hoping to move forward in a positive direction.
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