Today's lesson, Racism. If you see something written here that you’ve said or done, use it as an opportunity. Take it as a wake up call and make the decision to grow, change and be conscious of your own privilege. Remember, I am not a speaker for the entirety of a people. Use this blog as a reference tool, not as the one and only view on the topic.
While Asians are seen as the “Model” minority, it’s their “Model” status that so often works against them. People will rightly claim that Asians make more money and ignorantly claim that Asians are totes the smartest people ever, they overlook the fact that Asians are human beings. Flawed, amazing, ignorant and genius.
The problem here starts where most racial problems start, the generalities. “Asian” covers a lot of ground. A LOT. The problem is that if you are a fan of statistics, you will see a pattern of life as an Asian being super awesome and fantastic. If you read nothing but statistics, you would believe Asians not only have it all figured out but are some sort of super beings.
Some of you may read that and think, “Well, as stereotypes go, this doesn’t sound so bad.” Which leads to the foolish myth that there could actually be good or positive stereotypes.
Except, these very stereotypes cause a world of problems for Asians that are rarely discussed. For example, since they’re seen as being just the smartest peoples ever, it seems to be considered perfectly acceptable to require an Asian student to have higher test scores than any other student in order to get into college. Then, there’s the myth of Asians being the all knowing, all powerful, mystical herb farmers who can heal any wound, stop any pain and clear up any rash. Also something an ignorant person might consider a “Good” stereotype. Except, this overlooks the fact that Vietnamese American and Korean American women suffer some of the highest rates of cervical cancer in the nation and Vietnamese American men die from liver cancer at a rate seven times that of white men. The statistics though, they say that Asians are some of the most healthy people in the USA.
This leads back to the generalization of “Asians.” Like I said, that covers a lot of territory. Literally. So much so, there is very little that fairly depicts Asians in an accurate light. At least, if you’re reading statistics. Because “Asian” covers so many people, so many different sub-groups within the larger group, it seems to all even out in the wash. Frankly, if you look solely at the numbers, the “Wash” brings down those that are doing well, which takes something away from their hard work. While bringing up those that may be in desperate need of help but aren’t getting it because ya know…Asians don’t need it and stuff.