Posts tagged racism.
Wondering what movie to see this weekend? Look no further than the film about North Korean terrorists invading the White House, Olympus Has Fallen!
What’s that you say? Oh, you’re one of those people who need to hear some reviews first? Not to worry! These fellow movie goers’ tweets are sure to sell you on the film:
Whenever I see someone use that specific slur, I wonder how old could they possibly be.
“Good Mercian movie.” Mitt Romney gives it two thumbs up.
(P.S. The villains in the movie are North Korean.)
There are a ton of these “now I hate all Asians” tweets on Twitter now…
…but that above tweet specifically led to this amazing conversation:
At least she knows what she is, I guess?
Wait a minute…take a close look at who “favorited” that last tweet.
Fuck this movie. Fuck these racist assholes. Post-racial Merikkka strikes again…
Me: *stands up in sweater and button up to say goodbye to friends at the far side of the table*
White Guy: “ARE YOU GUYS OPEN OR WHAT? JEEZ, I NEED SOME SERVICE HERE!”
Me: “The fuck? I don’t work here.”
White Guy: “I….”
Me: “Fuck you, whatever. You order from the front anyway…”
White Guy: “I… uhhh…”
Me: “Fuck you, whatever.” *sits back in my seat and goes for the last piece of shrimp tempura
When Japanese Americans call bullshit on Dr. Seuss cartoons with racist depictions of Japanese Americans, and your defense against our calls of “that shit hurts and is racist as fuck” are “But he felt bad after the atomic bombings [massacres], and even dedicated a book to a Japanese friend!”-
You are just as involved in the same bullshit we were calling out in the first place. You don’t shit on a person, say you’re cool with their cousin, and everything is peachy. It doesn’t work like that.
some of my favorite #IfSantaWasAsian tweets
oh yes let’s not forget
Yup… Even on crimmis they stay with this racist anti-Asian fuckery…
"Positive" stereotypes still function under the rubric of white supremacy.
That is,White racism is a pathology looking for a place to land, sadism in search of a story. — George Lipsitz
Being interpreted as cute or sexy, and yet still dehumanized, results in harassment and assault that is considered “flattery” rather than what it is — racist.
“I repeat: these stereotypes are dangerous. Reducing Asian women into a sexual object is not funny, it is not flattering. It is perilous. We can see this when Asian women are subject to race-targeted sexual violence. The racist nature of the crimes go unrecognized and unpunished, as if there is nothing wrong with choosing a rape victim because she is Asian.
But in rapes and sexual assaults targeting Asian women, I can find no instance of prosecutors or police bringing “hate crime” charges. It seems our society frowns on the rape itself, but accepts the racial motivation behind it. Mainstream society simply is blind to this type of racism. Indeed, the Spokane police detective handling the case wrote in an email to me: “It was felt that there was no hate involved instead he [the lead rapist] was very infatuated with the Japanese race.” (sic).”
That the stereotype was “positive” or “negative” makes no difference to the victim.
On Institutionalized Anti-Asian Racism…
One of the things that sat with me earlier was around the idea of systemic anti-Asian attitudes in the same structures of white supremacy. Note that this post is not to position as a wedge or derail from discussions of institutional racism and, specifically, anti-Blackness. This post is more intended as a reminder about Asian American history, historical structures of anti-Asian racism in the US with a view towards the impacts that they hold in structures persisting to this day. If I do overstep in any way, please check me on it. I stand unequivocally against anti-Blackness, from white folks and from communities of color.
I think that it’s important to recognize that racism in Amerikkka is not strictly a Black/white binary. White supremacy functions at differing levels of oppression for different groups as a structural way to “reward” light skinned folks and endow some privilege on certain groups as a tool against Black folks, and in part against the communities upon which they are conferred. Do Asian (specifically, light skinned east Asian American) folks have privileges that Black folks don’t? Yes. Absolutely, and we need to recognize and deconstruct our complicity in white supremacist power structures. Do east Asian American folks hold privileges that are not afforded to South, South East, and PI folks? Yes. Does immigration status play a part in the exercising of these privileges and relative privilege? Absolutely. Are those privileges an equality with white folks? No, and I don’t think that we should be complicit in aspiring to anti-Black privileges of white supremacy.
Do API/As still experience the effects of institutionalized discrimination? I think that there is something to be said for that.
A lot of privilege comes from institutionalized and inherited privileges. Looking at our enclaves (something that came up before), can be illustrative. Chinatowns, Nihonmachis, Manilatowns, K-Towns and other communities did not arise out of a desire to be kitschy white tourist attractions. The latter part of the 19th century and the early part of the 20th century, particularly in western state, had heavy impacts from anti-Asian discriminatory policies and outright racism. Things like the Alien Land Act in California restricted the rights of Asian immigrants to own the land they worked, or the homes they lived in. A lot of the racism faced by early migrants to the US (a large portion of them agricultural workers) limited their access to housing and, as a result, inherited wealth- something consistently shown as a privilege of whiteness. A lot of these same communities still suffer from access to public services, poverty, and a host of other issues. Many of the communities that popped up were for protection, mutual aid and provision for a community faced with rabid anti-Asian racism. These images are both from the early 20th century:
Anti-Asian riots were common and violent occurrences during the same period.
There are lots of other examples of where Asian Americans experience the ‘bamboo ceiling’ or the recurring inability of the entertainment industry to believe that Asian Americans can play Asian/Asian American characters convincingly (see also, Miss Saigon Controversy). Let alone seeing Asian Americans in leading roles or positive, affirming and complex characters other than stereotypical tropes and side-characters.
Disaggregating our communities is also an important part of seeing the complexities of our communities. Checking out the realities of some Asian American communities, particularly South East Asian, is a very different reality from the privileges that east Asians have (y’all should check out PrYSM, and support their work if you are able). Looking at the profiling and police-immigration enforcement that occurs in some of our communities that leads to massive deportations of refugees or being gunned down by police while unarmed, is also something we need to be aware of.
Alongside this, we have the desexualization of the Asian male, they hypersexualized fetishization of the Asian female (as broader categories, though gender and sexuality shift some of these narratives, but still usually towards a position empowering white fetishization of APIA bodies). The perpetual foreigner and fear of a yellow planet that constantly reappear in public discourse. Obviously, there are a lot more pieces of racism that are so diffused throughout the structuring of US society, that it probably isn’t relevant to enumerate them all.
I think that as APIAs, we do experience structural racism, but in a different way than Black folks. We also need to remember that there are Black folks that are APIAs. We need to remember that, and fight the anti-Blackness that does appear in our communities. We need to remember that a lot of our politicization came from solidarity with Black folks and Black Power- that we should be standing in support of Black folks, rather than fighting for a place in white supremacist power dynamics that shit on all POC, but specifically on Black folks.
My apologies. This post probably could have, should have been written better- too many distractions around right now.
ETO- there should also be additions around the realities that South Asian folks face to this. I’m not the best to address these issues, but Islamophobia, anti-Desi violence, and the impacts of a lot of the same legislation that targeted east Asian folks in the late 19th/early 20th century also targeted them. This should probably be a whole post. One that i’m not qualified to write.