I have received nasty looks and yells: “We speak Finnish in Finland”! Sometimes I respond in Finnish as politely as possible, “you have a great day too”.
During large sports events my mom has advised me to not speak Russian on public transport.
The moments when people defend you as a victim of discrimination or harassment are immensely empowering. As a member of both a language and a sexual minority, it makes you feel safe: it feels like I can trust that I too will be supported, if I face discrimination.
When I was a child, I sometimes received hateful comments from adults because of my first language. A few times another adult showed me support either with words or a kind look. It was very important to me, because it showed me that not everyone agreed with the harasser.
When we work together and show the victim of discrimination that they are not alone, we take control of the situation and the power away from the harasser.