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I’m Asian American and… I Want Reparations For Yellow Fever

End the use of Racial Slurs and Racist Mascots in sports

Reappropriate has the full list of AAPI bloggers and journalists in solidarity with #NotYourMascot, along with this list of petitions to sign:

Act Now!

Here are many ongoing ways you can participate:

  1. Sign this petition by 18millionrising (@18millionrising) telling Dan Snyder and the Washington R*dskins that you do not support their team name and mascot!
  2. Sign this petition by EONM (@EONMassoc) over at Change.org, opposing the Washington R*dskins!
  3. Send an email (Wylliet@redskins.com) or a snail mail letter (Dan Snyder c/o Redskin Park; 21300 Redskin Park Dr.; Ashburn, VA 20147) to the Washington R*dskins administration asking them to change the team name.
  4. Participate in the #Not4Sale campaign to protest Dan Snyder’s offensive creation of a “philanthropic” organization to purchase the goodwill of Native people. Retweet photos shared to this hashtag to help send the message that Native people are not for sale.
  5. Bookmark Eradication of Native Mascotry (EONM) and follow them on Twitter (@eonmassoc)
  6. Please add any additional links you think would be useful to the comments section below as an additional resource.
Feb 6

How I Learned To Feel Undesirable

Arexis Fongman: A Case Study on Casual Racism

generasian:

First and foremost, thanks to Wall Street Journal columnist Jeff Yang and composer/lyricist Timothy Huang for bringing this to attention.

Alexis Fishman, at first sight, seems like a perfectly average woman. She graduated in 2004 from a performing arts school in Western Australia and went on to pursue a career in the arts, now ‘based permanently in New York’, as per her official website. Her performer’s page is professional, her website is tastefully metropolitan, and the posts on her personal Facebook give no indication of strange or deviant social behavior. She is, in essence, the typical young woman trying to make a name for herself in the performing arts industry. Why, then, has she created a Facebook profile dedicated solely to the enthusiastic spread of what amounts to racist garbage? Internet, meet Arexis Fongman.

image

Read More

What a disgusting human being. You can give her a piece of your mind here.

"Growing Up As an Asian-German, Part One" by Thi Yenhan Truong

“Do some Kung Fu moves, like Jackie Chan! “

It happened when I went to elementary school; I must have been about seven or eight years old. While I was standing on the playground in recess, some kids from my class started to gather around me. “Can you do some cool moves, like Jackie Chan?” I was intimidated by their request – I notoriously sucked in PE, and I had never tried any martial arts. But I knew why the other kids asked: because I was Asian. I was the only Asian kid in my year. I felt all kinds of awkward and alone.

Growing up with Vietnamese parents in a German town with a population of 17,000 was not always easy. The feeling I recall from those times was loneliness. Given that I was a weird child who was not too good at socializing (I still am not) but being one of the few Asians in the whole town made things even worse. Of course, there were a handful of other Asian families: Chinese, Korean, Philippino, some even Vietnamese. But the difference between them and us couldn’t have been greater. “Don’t play with those children”, my mom used to say, “They’re not refugees like us – they came as communist contract workers.” To my parents the Cold War had never ended, and there was a strong divide between the “good” Vietnamese and the “bad” ones. So I only had white middle-class friends.

“You speak such a fine German!”

The feeling of alienation stayed consistent during my whole school career: I was frequently questioned by teachers and other students how I could speak such good German. How I could ace in German because I was, you know, not German. The nationalistic view that you can only be German if your ancestors were German is still alive and kicking. Hence I was not German. In order to prepare me for the hardships of being a foreigner, my mom taught me: “We are outlanders, the Germans look down on us. So you have to prove them wrong, you need to do everything perfectly.”

I resented being different: Why couldn’t I just be like all the others? My skin and my hair color felt like a constant source of embarrassment. The fact that my parents don’t speak German very well was even more painful. “I have a hard time getting everything your parents say,” one of my best friends once confessed. So as a way of compensating I did everything to perfect my German. I read canonical German literature, from Goethe to Heine to Jelinek. My sentences were filled with the rarest German words imaginable – words that the average German would have to look up in a dictionary.

You can read part two here.

ok. addressing the elephant in the room on christmas

unfortunately, i’ve offended my asian brothers & sisters with an IG post which i made during my recent tour of japan. in that post, i likened a japanese department store employee’s vocal intonation to that of a (church) deacon speaking in tongues. clearly, i didn’t intend to offend anyone (asian or otherwise), clearly, i *thought* that comparison was funny-cute

… and clearly i thought wrong.

in hindsight, it’s easy to see how my post was yet another example of the ugly, american flipping yet another ugly/racially/culturally insensitive script. so, let me make this abundantly clear….

THE ISH THAT I SAID WAS DUMB (PERIOD).

And no, it wasn’t Duck Dynasty/Phil Robertson mean spirited-xenophobic dumb (but the last time i checked, sleep was still the cousin of death)

—look. i’m a human being and dumber yet, i’m a public figure. if you’re lucky enough to be either of the aforementioned, then not only should one stay clear of saying or writing hurtful things, one should actively work against feeling comfortable, thinking hurtful thoughts. given that black culture consistently finds itself at the butt end of so many offensive “outsider” jokes, I should be way, way more sensitive (after all, who’s zooming who). I for one, should never allow my cultural bias to take precedence over my “examined life” (clunkers be damned). i know the whole kinder and gentler thing reeks of a self serving political correctness, but eff it, it’s “all me”.

so, here i am once again, publicly coming to terms with some more of my stupid “say, say, say” ish. allow me to ask for forgiveness and understanding from anyone that i’ve offended. I will be better in 2014 (i promise)

-thank you.

-akt

-

A pretty damn good apology from The Roots drummer, Questlove, who made some pretty racist comments on his IG this week along with Padma Lakshmi. Lakshmi added in, ““and I get a yellow pass anyway”. Interesting.

However, some commentary from community organizer and spoken word artist Bao Phi on this:

OK, ?uestlove and Padma made fun of “Asian” accents. While ?uestlove has apologized, there seems to be a lack of discussion and awareness about how that clowning is rooted in a xenophobic anti-Asian racist history that includes among many other things forced assimilation to whiteness and the naturalization of our “other”ness. I’m not trying to demonize either of them - rather than participate in the theatrical rhetoric of “calling people out” in the name of self-righteous exceptionalism, I’d love to see a constructive, honest dialogue about how even people of color can participate in a particular anti-Asian racism that is a fundamental logic of white supremacy. Not with the language of “we have it worse” or with the intention to guilt, but in the interest of cross-community solidarity and transformative change. Peace.

Ngọc Loan Trần also wrote a piece on “calling in” rather than “calling out” members of our community when they fuck up.

What are your thoughts? 

To all students or members of organizations (on campus or off campus):

My name is  Juliet Shen and I am the Professional Development Coordinator for the East Coast Asian American Student Union (ECAASU) National Board. As a national, student-leader run organization, ECAASU’s mission is to inspire, educate, and empower those interested in the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) issues. 

I wanted to let you know about two of ECAASU’s initiatives to connect with students, the Campus Ambassador Program (for individuals) and the Affiliate Organization Program (for organizations). These programs would be a great start to working with others and other organizations that work on AAPI work across the East Coast. 

The Campus Ambassador Program allows students across the East Coast to network and organize on national and local scale initiatives actively contributing to projects, campaigns, coalition building and grassroots activism through ECAASU National. 

 The deadline to apply is OCTOBER 27, 2013 at 11:59 PM EST. Feel free to visit ECAASU online or email Lindsey.lue@ecaasu.org for more information! 

The Affiliate Organization Program aims to connect organizations directly with ECAASU and other student organizations on the East Coast. Additionally, this program will work as a resource on how to successfully organize Asian American and Pacific Islander focused events and programs on both a national and local scale. The deadline for this application is October 27, 2013 11:59 PM EST. Feel free to contact diana.lee@ecaasu.org with any questions or concerns.

Please visit our website at www.ecaasu.org to learn more about our organization and programs and share this opportunity with other student organizations that have an interest in being more involved with the AAPI community.

We are currently accepting applications for these programs, and I didn’t want you to miss the chance to apply! 

Please share this opportunity with other students who may be interested. We hope to see your application.

Sincerely,

Juliet Shen

The Asian-American Awakening: That Moment When You Realize You're Not White

I connect with this a lot.

What was your Awakening moment?

Oct 9

PAPER AVAILABLE FOR DOWNLOAD: White Sexual Imperialism: A Theory of Asian Feminist Jurisprudence by Sunny Woan

"This article studies the intersectionality of race and gender, examining it through the lens of Western imperialism. Even though both critical race and feminist scholarship have addressed this intersectionality, few if any offer a precise theory for understanding the imperialized experience. This article seeks to fill that void. The social inequality minority women face, in particular those of Asian descent, can be best articulated by a theory this article calls white sexual imperialism. 

The history of Western imperialism in Asia and its lingering effects present the greatest source of inequality for Diasporic Asian women today. White sexual imperialism, through rape and war, created the hyper-sexualized stereotype of the Asian woman. This stereotype in turn fostered the over-prevalence of Asian women in pornography, the mail-order bride phenomenon, the Asian fetish syndrome, and worst of all, sexual violence against Asian women. These issues are each duly explored in the article, drawing on Professor Catherine MacKinnon’s dominance theory to support the white sexual imperialism principle. 

The ultimate purpose of this article is to gain greater recognition from both critical race and feminist theorists of imperialism’s role in race and gender inequality.”

Oct 3

Exotification - I'm Not Your Pretty Little Lotus Flower