A TriMet employee has posted multiple videos on his TikTok social media account mocking people of color and women.
Khris Alexander is a supervisor with the regional transit agency TriMet. His handle on TikTok, where he has 128 followers, is @khrisnval. In the videos, he mocks Asian people's driving abilities, Black people's names, and women's bodies.
In one video, Alexander narrates footage of a TriMet bus running over a curb and in the voice-over he makes fun of people of Asian descent by mocking their accents. "Oh no, honey," he says in a pidgin voice, "you cannot go there, that's the curb, why you drive over it, honey, yeah, you fuck up. Oh my God, honey."
In another video, Alexander pretends to use a radio to call in a name, as if to a dispatch desk. He says, "I need to run one by name and date of birth. Last name Smith, Sam Mary Ida Tom Henry." Then he states the first name, which he pronounces something like, "Ja-KWELL-en." His punch line: "Common spelling." He appears to be making fun of Black people who have nonwhite American names.
Alexander is also seen in a third video reenacting a Family Feud game show episode with host Steve Harvey where he guesses the answer to the question: "Name a job that's dirty but someone has to do it," and then Alexander responds first by saying "plumber," then says "gynecologist"—the winning answer in his reenactment.
After WW contacted TriMet yesterday for comment on the videos, Alexander deleted his TikTok account. He did not respond to WW's request for comment.
Alexander is a 19-year TriMet employee, and makes $81,806 a year. He was elected in 2018 to the board of Amalgamated Transit Union 757, the union that represents transit workers. On his website, he says ATU president Shirley Block removed him from the board in 2020.
A source tells WW that Alexander's most recent TikTok video was posted in December. WW could not confirm the dates of the videos before Alexander deleted his account.
TriMet says it is investigating Alexander's videos.
"TriMet has not received any complaints directly about this. Following Willamette Week's inquiry, we immediately launched an internal investigation," TriMet spokeswoman Roberta Altstadt wrote in an email response. "We cannot comment further as this is a personnel matter. However, while TriMet employees have a right to freedom of expression, the statements and connotations in those videos do not reflect TriMet's principles and mission to our community. TriMet values equity and inclusion as we work to provide transit service that is safe, accessible and welcoming for all."
Alexander posted the videos in a moment when Asian and Black people face an increasing amount of hate and bias incidents, in a racist backlash that blames Asians for the COVID-19 pandemic and Black people for civil unrest and protests.
As WW previously reported, Asian-owned businesses were hit in a window-shattering spree along Southeast 82nd Avenue last month, and Black activists have been the repeated recipients of hate mail following protests surrounding the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.