Sunday, March 25, 2007

"Why I Hate Black People"

So I was browsing several blogs yesterday morning and came across this posting. Well, immediately it caught my eye. It's a little snippet about some writer who apparently had to express his disdain for people of color in our country. Oh and he's of Asian descent. Ooh Nelly, what can of worms just opened?

I'm surprised I hadn't seen or heard about this before. The blog post was from February and the original column ran February 23rd. I won't rehashing the article, you can take the time to read it. In a way, I'm not surprised by the blatant racism, but I am too. I will be the first to admit Asians and African Americans don't necessarily see eye to eye all the time. Much of it has to do with the urban centers where Asian have a tendency to own shops in the African American community.

Some Asian business owners, not all, have taken on the air of distrust and abuse. Growing up there was a store on the corner from my home owned by a Vietnamese-American family. While I never had a problem when I went into the store, I know many of the neighborhood children were confronted by racism and discrimination: only two children allowed in store at a time, being asked to empty their pockets before entering and upon leaving the store, being followed while browsing the aisles for sweet was obvious. Not many whites lived in my neighborhood as a child, but those who did, never went through this treatment.

Historically, Black people may have been distrustful of Asians simply because we experienced similar discrimination from other groups. Plus given the fact Asians are a minority in this country too, the assumption goes one group in a parallel social status would not disenfranchise another. Wrong. Despite the fact I believe people of all colors are equal, lets call a spade a spade (perhaps not the best colloquialism here, LOL). African Americans are always looked upon as the bottom of the social caste system in the US.

Getting back to the author's assertions, I understand how hurtful it must be to be constantly made fun of because of how you speak, appear, and act. Asian jokes are worse than bad black jokes. However, its a slippery slope to over generalize as he did in his piece that all Blacks are uneducated, ignorant, impoverished folk, that have nothing to do but make fun of Asians. It's a bit ignorant for him to believe that out the hundreds of thousands of African descendants residing the distance between NYC and LA, NOLA to Seattle, all hate Asians. Where the problems truly lies is the amount of distrust that has developed between our communities and the inability to reach out and walk in another cultural man's shoes.

I won't disagree with some of his convictions. There are those amongst my community that truly wish to wallow in the muck, never rising above their misfortunes and are weak-willed, but then again, doesn't every culture have those you have to shake your head at and go "Mmmph mmmph mmmph?" How many people of color have risen above their more than humble upbringings to be more than where they came from? Country folk from rural areas, surpassing the harshest conditions? People like Maya Angelou, Oprah Winfrey, etc etc, for example. The lie must not be placed upon us because our skin is darker than yours Mister Eng.

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