Why should we put up with racial discrimination?

I know all of us, no matter what our race is, have been at one time or another discriminated against, hurt, embarrassed, humiliated, or angered by another ethnic group.  However, we have to move on even though we find it immensely challenging to forgive and forget.  We should not generalized and assume a certain race is horrible based on the actions of one person or a group of people.  I say this because I see too many individuals doing this including people in the public eye like John McCain, a presidential hopeful.  The article might not be current, but the issue is still revelant today :  racial slurs. After I read the article by Katie Hong, of the Seattlepi.com I was appalled and disappointed by his racist remark about how he hated the “gooks” the Vietnamese guards who held him captive during the Vietnam War. Even though I sympathize with him about his horrible treatment by the North Vietnamese, I do not condone his racial slur because like Katie Hong said “To the Asian American community, the term is akin to the racist word “nigger.”            I have to acquiesce with Katie that it is irresponsible that the other presidential hopefuls back then as well as the media had made light of the racial slur by ignoring it and acting like it never happened.  If his remark had targeted African Americans that would cause such an uproar that it would have dominated headline news before we even had a chance to blink much less open our mouths. Also, the Reverend Al Sharpton would be on the first flight out to Arizona to rally a protest in front of John McCain’s house. However, since it is targeting Asians, it is no big deal?  Where is our “Al Sharpton” ? Who is going to stand up for the Asian American population? Just because we do not protest everything does not mean that we do not care how we are treated.  As a member of the Asian community I find it unfair and disappointing that our feelings are not being considered and our opinions are not being heard. Are Asians underrepresented? Are we still invisible?  Do people see us as a stepping stone?  Do we give this impression that we are too accepting?  Are we too nice?  Are we indifferent?  All I know is, we should not put up with racial slurs.  Nobody has a right to make disparaging remarks about us because we are a part of this country.  Maybe once in awhile we need to throw a fit like every other race to show our displeasure and disgust!


11 thoughts on “Why should we put up with racial discrimination?

  1. amphone

    I think we represent ourselves pretty well, among our Asian community that is. It is still very hard to get the movers and shaker in the big house to come down and be a part of our community events. In the major cities we are pretty invisible in the business community. our professionals are doing well in work place, working that is. There are a few CEO, I am sure. As far as being a stepping stone, more and more Asian are being accepted and respect among their peers and co-workers. People are more mindful when they know you smart. If they don’t know you are smart, we just act smart, and they will respect us. That is because we are Chinese or Japanese. Even though we are Laotians. Laotians are smart too. I think more and more Asians are stepping up. I know a few non profit that are out there fight for Asian rights. We are not nice,”You buy now!” We are so different from the non Asian community. There are so much to be learn about us. But I do feel we are not being targeted for racial crime and hate crime. What are they going to do without the Asians? We’ll put them on the breaking news if they mess with us. The problem I see in the Asian community is the lack of unity and communication. There so many Asian community out there. I tapped into the Korean community service center. It took me two years to be accepted. Now they are learning about the need of other Asian (Laotians). They got a lot of good stuffs in their center. Save me the headach of running around. Oh, I joined the coalition called GAAPIC (Georgia Asian American Pacific Islander community). We meet once a month.

  2. Amphone, you are right that we all need to communicate and help each other. There are many smart Laotians out there. With our different blogs and websites we can show everybody how we are. If we don’t toot our own horn then who else will? There is nothing wrong with admitting that we are intelligent and resourceful. You are lucky that there are many asian communities in your area. There are not too many here.

  3. amphone

    I go out there so the Laotian voice can be heard. Most of the time I voice for everyone else. I just want the other Asian community to stay in touch what me and my group had started. We came a long way, sustainability is a battle. It’s constant up hill climb. There aren’t many of us who can be too involve in the community work. The best group to be out there is the youngs and singles because once you tied down its hard to run around. For the lack of better word…

  4. Pingback: A Sense of Belonging « Nye Noona

  5. Jiepster

    You want to know what the ironic thing is? He adopted a girl from Bangladesh. I know what he said was hateful towards Vietnamese but since they tortured him and put him in their prison-it is understandable that he does not like them. However it is not right that he said the word “gook”. I am not voting for the man but thought the fact that he adopted an Asian kid was ironic.

  6. Ginger

    I think some people had it in his/her mind as to what s/he is saying, but when it came out, it seemed that it was all wrong because the readers or listeners perceived it differently. But in his case, I think we all perceived it as he intended.

    What I personally discover was that it is not important as to how or what I say to people, as for some don’t even try to understand, but it seemed that it is more important as to how they perceived it…might be because that person always think that s/he is right, but at the end I discovered that I can’t please everyone…I just write and hope for the best, as you can see that it is not always a happy ending to my writing, I get a lot of criticism from my readers, if not through comments then it’s via e-mail because some judged me by his/her standard of morality, but if only the truth be told, that person has no right to judge me at all.

  7. amphone

    When all is said and done, those that are weak will get crushed and left behind. Those that are strong will continue to advance. Exercise high tolerance if you know you are weak and we should always be more consideration of others…

  8. Leena

    Hope I’m not intruding. Just want to say, I enjoyed readying the article and can related. Our community here is the same as well. In general there are good and bad in every generation, that’s including our elders. It’s impossible to avoid bad role models in any community. So, it’s really up to us (the younger generation) and all the new generations to come to learn, educate , improve and use the wisdom, intellegence, and common sense to decide what or whom we want to look up to. If you want to emulate someone, why not emulate the best not the worse.

  9. Laotian Teacher

    Leena, you are welcome to comment anytime. I agree in every community/culture there are bad role models and it is up to us to do something about it. I like what you say about emulating the best instead of the worse. Those of us who care, need to be the kind of role models that others can be proud to look up to.:)

  10. amphone

    Hi Leena, I like what you said about common sense. It take me a while understand some of the thing that goes on in my community.

    Thank you LT(Laotian teacher) for being a part of the change. If we don’t carry the torch of our ancestreal traditions, who will? We will be the next elders someday, what would our kids say about us?

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