Asian Americans

Like any ethnic or racial group, Asian Americans are not monolithic. The ‘Asian Pacific American’ umbrella includes over 45 distinct ethnicities speaking over 100 language dialects. The articles contains here reflect the diversity of this growing community.

No Simple Answers to Achieving Racial Justice But One

Achieving Racial Justice

Scot Nakagawa: The problem is that there is no colorblind meritocracy in the U.S. That’s just a myth of white supremacy. Our problem is racism, not a lack of mettle, gumption, pluck, or educational attainment.

How The Asians Did Not Become White

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Scot Nakagawa: Asians are the least likely among all racial groups to make it to the top in the private sector, including among law firms, again in spite of being better educated.

Check Your Privilege, Princeton Tory

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Scot Nakagawa: The fact that many struggled to win the privileges we enjoy doesn’t make those privileges just and right. Privileges never are just and right in a truly democratic society.

Model Minority Suicide: Five Reasons, Five Ways

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Scot Nakagawa: The belief, that the black poor are just entitlement junkies, has negative consequences for all poor people because the tough “love” solutions this belief inspires, like cutting back on food stamps and other programs, see no color.

No Race on Noah’s Ark?

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Sharon Kyle: Whether we are talking about Liz Taylor playing “Cleopatra” or Russell Crowe standing in to represent every man, the outcome is the same – disproportionately high rates of unemployment for people of color.

Segregation in Education: Reading Between the Lines

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Scot Nakagawa: The composition of our American citizenry will soon be mostly non-white, but white students aren’t, for the most part, being prepared for that future, making what’s happening on the whiter side of the color line in our schools something racial justice advocates should be concerned about.

MSNBC Does Asian Americans No Favors

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Asian American Stereotypes in Media: It’s about time Asian American stories get told, and not just to benefit Asian Americans.

The Origins of the Asian American Model Minority Myth

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Color of Success: Ellen Wu’s The Color of Success just might be the best examination of the roots of the model minority stereotype in print.

Asian American Organizing: The Flipside of Conditional Privilege

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Asian American Organizing: Maybe Asian Americans who faced the bribe of model minority status can discern the guiles of white supremacy.

On Asian American Privilege

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Asian American Privilege — The explosion of online race talk about Asian Americans lately is enough to make your head spin.

Asian American Reflections on Martin Luther King Day

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MLK Day and Asian Americans — Most people don’t realize that the United States dropped 600,000 tons of napalm on Korea.

“How I Met Your Mother” Is Part of a Bigger Problem

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Asian Americans on Television — The underrepresentation is bad enough without white performers exploiting racist ideas about Asian culture.

Model Minority American Exceptionalism Myth

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Soya Jung — The book, The Triple Package, is rife with American exceptionalism and model minority thinking – the notion that anyone can succeed in America if they just act right, and those who don’t will get what they deserve.

Wendell Berry’s Reflections on Racism

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Walter Moss: What I like most about Berry’s comments on racism is his linking it with a broader perspective on what type of society and culture he thinks the United States should have. More about that later, but first it should be noted that his general view is consistent with most liberal/progressive thinking.

New Slant on Hate Speech

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Scot Nakagawa: To address a problem of racial bigotry our government seems to think guides us while choosing words to describe racial groups but magically skips over us when we engage in more substantive practices affecting those groups like administering elections, policing our neighborhoods, and setting their wages and working conditions.

Asian Americans Are the Same as Other Americans, But Not in the Way Frank Wu Seems to Think We Are

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Scot Nakagawa: It’s only as we leave Asia that we assume a pan-Asian identity imposed on us by westerners for whom Asia might as well be Grosse Pointe, Michigan for all the diversity it is assumed exists among Asian peoples.

Origins of “Gook”

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Soya Jung: The word “gook” was created as a tool of American war and conquest – a tool used to ensure the dehumanization of subject peoples, so that they could be killed and disappeared and stolen from with impunity.

Why Are Asians So Racist?

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Scot Nakagawa: Asian immigrants almost never arrive here with an understanding of “Asian” as a race nor of the racial attitudes that prevail in the U.S. They have to be taught.

Where I Come From

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Soya Jung: There are many different paths to political consciousness. But it always happens as part of asking ourselves, “Why?” and fighting alongside others to change the conditions in which we find ourselves.

Exploiting Asian Girlz

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Scot Nakagawa: The song and accompanying video are intended to “parody” the popular sexual fetish for Asian women. Instead, it has the effect of making a bad joke out of a very problem with extremely serious consequences.

Three Things Asian Americans Owe the Civil Rights Movement

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Scot Nakagawa: We did not just pull ourselves up by our bootstraps. Instead, we owe a great debt to the Civil Rights Movement. I say the upcoming anniversary of the March is as good a time as any to start talking about it.

Should Progressives Stop Criticizing Obama?

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Randy Shawo: While Obama draws overwhelming support among African-Americans, Latinos, Asian-Americans, single women and organized labor, some progressives continue to attack him. But with Romney-Ryan posing a dire threat to progressive interests, this criticism should stop until after Election Day.

Walmart in Chinatown: There Goes the Neighborhood

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Aiha Nguyen: LA’s Chinatown is built on small business and Walmart would be in direct competition with the local markets and shops that already serve the local population.

A Letter to Tea Partiers and Your Anti-Racist Moment

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John Delloro: Lets be honest about your vision of society and admit that you are more comfortable with a white nation so that we can have a real discussion. Just keep in mind these US Census Bureau projections: In 20 years, we will witness the last largest population of white people to retire in the nation and white deaths will outpace white births. In one generation, the nation will be majority people of color. In other words, it will be largely communities of color who will make decisions about your retirement security.

Righting the Moral Wrongs of Immigration Reform

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David A. Love: The Tea Party movement, a twenty-first-century incarnation of the angry white mob—with corporate backing no less—exploits the fear of the foreigner. They and their cohorts in the anti-immigrant movement stoke the fires of hatred and resentment, among a population hit by recession and searching for the enemy.

Asian Americans: Whose Side Are You On?

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John Delloro: Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) response to the racial incident at UCSD may foreshadow the fate of race and racism in this nation.

Cesar Chavez Day and the Forgotten Asian Americans

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his Cesar Chavez Day (March 31) reminds us how forgotten stories can perpetuate stereotypes. Charlotte, an Asian American student leader at Pomona College, asked me how do we ignite people into political action and sweep away the tired public perception of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) as passive and docile. I asked her if [...]

We Are All Gay

Bible or no Bible, the bigotry of opposing gay marriage obstructs our overall pursuit for equality. When I was many years younger, I had shared with a group of men how I was bothered that a woman I was attracted to thought I was gay. Most of them nodded and shared their past insecurities whenever [...]

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