as-salaam aleikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,
Please go and read this excellent excellent article (Mashallah) by a UAE local sister named Maryam Alhamly:
Dubai Belongs to Us ALL
Some of the stereotypes of Emiratis.... arrogant, spoiled, unreliable, lazy, racist....
How many people agree with these stereotypes? I am not so sure but some of these stereotypes might spoil over to most Khaleeji locals... but again, I have only lived in UAE so I can only speak about what is happening in UAE.
How many who agree with these stereotypes have friends who are Emiratis? How many who agree have interacted with local families in UAE? How many who agree have made efforts to befriend and/or converse with Emiratis?
If you were invited to an Emirati home, or to an event like a local wedding, would you accept the invitation? Or would you automatically decline based on how you feel or based on what you have heard about how bad the locals are?
I believe that there are many many people who come to live and work here and end up reverse discriminating against the Emiratis. Are all Emiratis angels? No, of course not. There are good and bad people in every single country in the world.
Are there stories out there that reinforce these negative stereotypes of Emiratis? There sure are.
But does that really mean its ok to go and label all of them with these stereotypes? Of course not!!
I believe that many of the people who are racist toward the locals don't even have local friends. It is all just from the fact that there isn't enough interaction between everyone, and the negative stories fly all around and everyone keeps focusing on all of the negative, because it is all they hear since everyone else also doesn't interact with the locals very much.
Is this all the faults of the expats? No, of course not. But if you think about it, in many countries where they have large immigrant populations, one of the biggest complaints is that so many fail to integrate with the rest of the local population, and just stay huddled in their cultural groups.
Is this not the exact same kind of thing happening in UAE? It is important that both the locals and the expats make efforts to integrate. And this effort has to come from both sides.
Reverse discrimination is a reaction of many people but it is wrong because it blocks those bridges that could be built to integrate.
I am an American married to an Emirati and Mashallah I was welcomed with open arms by my in-laws and the family's friends. To this day when family and friends of the family come over, I am always greeted with a warm smile and it is my own fault for not being able to speak Arabic by now to truly be fully integrated with them all in all of the conversations.
I am invited to other homes and weddings and get-togethers. They have truly accepted me Mashallah Alhamdulillah. Besides any language barriers, they have never given off vibes that they do not like me and/or my culture. If any of the expats came over to my in-laws homes they would be truly greeted just as warmly.